Lisa Kirk: House of Cards (Maison des Cartes) / Invisible-Exports, New York / Sales Tour

Lisa Kirk’s solo exhibition House of Cards at Invisible-Exports in New York appears as a mordant comment on the current economic crisis. Lisa Kirk’s House of Cards features the work Maison des Cartes, a show model “shanty timeshare” built from 52 separate pieces of found materials. Maison des Cartes occupies the central space of the gallery. The gallery’s office has been transformed into a functioning real estate salesroom. Sales representatives present the viewers with the chance to buy into the private residence club. Upon the show’s completion, the structure will be rebuilt in the scenic Brooklyn Navy Yard (ribbon-cutting ceremony at the maison’s new location in the scenic Brooklyn Navy Yard on May 1, 2009) where shareholders will have the opportunity to experience shanty living. After 52 weeks, Maison des Cartes will be disassembled and distributed to the shareholders as 52 separate and unique artworks.

In this video, sales specialist Susan London takes art advisor and commentator Althea Viafora-Kress on a sales tour through the installation. Lisa Kirk’s shanty is coupled with an underground installation of her updated project, Revolution (06-09) that was las exhibited at P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center.

The sales specialists are Lisa Kirk’s fist attempt to incorporate conceptual theater into Kirk’s work. Lisa Kirk found Susan among 2 other actors from craigslist who were given a handbook describing a “five step selling process” (an additional part of the show), that handbook essentially outlined how to sell the product with different strategies. Each sales specialist then created their own individual approach to improvising and constructing the narrative to work with customers when visiting maison des cartes.

For the last decade, Lisa Kirk (born in New York City in 1967) has produced multi-media work and environmental installations that explore capitalism, terrorism and political violence. Lisa Kirk’s work has been exhibited at P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center | Museum of Modern Art affiliate; Galerí­a Comercial, PR; Participant INC., NY; and MOT International, London. She has also contributed projects to North Drive Press, NY; Creative Time, NY; and Charlie, NY. Her curated projects include LEGION, Bonds of Love, at John Connelly Presents, The Outlaw Series and You.

Lisa Kirk: House of Cards (Maison des Cartes) at Invisible-Exports, New York. March 7, 2009.

Links: House of Cards on, Left Bank Art Blog,, Haber Arts, Flavorpill, Artcat, James Wagner.

PS: Coming soon: conversation between Lisa Kirk and Althea Viafora-Kress.
PPS: These are the last two weekends for maison des cartes. Sales Specialists are available this weekend and next Friday, 2pm – 6pm, and by appointment. Sales Specialists will be also be available for extended Open House hours, 11am – 6pm, on the final weekend, March 28 – 29.

> Right-click (Mac: ctrl-click) this link to download Quicktime video file.

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