David Zwirner is pleased to present the United States premiere of Jordan Wolfson’s most recent video work, Riverboat song (2017–2018). By turns surreal, deadpan, and mischievous, Riverboat song combines computer-animated vignettes and found video clips with pop soundtracks and a monologue voiced by the artist. Since its debut at Sadie Coles HQ, London, last year, the work has been revisited and expanded by Wolfson, who has added new scenes that will be shown here for the first time. On view at the gallery’s 533 West 19th Street location, this will be the artist’s third solo exhibition with David Zwirner.
Over the past decade, Wolfson has become known for his thought-provoking works in a wide range of media, including video, sculpture, installation, photography, and performance. Pulling intuitively from the world of advertising, the Internet, and the technology industry, he produces ambitious and enigmatic narratives that frequently feature a series of invented and appropriated animated characters.
Image: Jordan Wolfson, Riverboat song, 2017–2018 (still)
"Much of the power of Jordan's work comes from its being both specific and elusive. His feeling, ideas and emotions are present in a raw, often uncomfortable form. But it is not autobiographical, even though his voice and sometimes his image appears in the work, there is also remove and distance. . . . 'What's satisfying is the action,' he says. 'The exciting part is the practice of doing the work.'" —Charlie Porter, in a profile of the artist in Fantastic Man magazine
"In terms of creating worlds, whether artistically or conceptually, I think that the structure of editing [the animation] allows me to avoid using a rational process to include or exclude elements. . . . Something I think about is constantly making the work deny what a viewer might expect, thereby keeping the work unreadable or non-didactic." —Jordan Wolfson in conversation with Aram Moshayedi in Jordan Wolfson: Ecce Homo / Le Poseur, the catalogue accompanying the artist’s 2012–2013 exhibitions at REDCAT (Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater) in Los Angeles and the Stedelijk Museum voor Actuele Kunst (S.M.A.K.) in Ghent.