James Nares Retrospective of Work from 1976 Opens at Paul Kasmin Gallery

Still from James Nares' Pendulum (1976). Courtesy Paul Kasmin Gallery.

This week, at Paul Kasmin’s new gallery space in the old Bungalow 8 nightclub, the artist and filmmaker James Nares will present work from the year 1976. For those keeping score, that’s a full two years before the No Wave scene that Mr. Nares helped create emerged in Lower Manhattan.

The show, “1976: Movies, Photographs and Related Works on Paper,” will include, among other works, Mr. Nares’ early film Pendulum, along with five other films from the same year. Pendulum documents the movement of a large spherical mass hung from a footbridge over Staple Street in Manhattan.

Back in 2010, we were lucky enough to catch a rare screening of Mr. Nares’ Rome ’78, the so-called “first and only No Wave epic.” Unlike his minimalist pieces depicting the same action or movement over and over again (as in a pendulum swinging), the film was 90-minutes, largely improvised and recast the murder of Emperor Caligula as an operatic post-punk comedy in the gritty Lower East Side of the late 70s. Mr. Nares was in attendance and was pleased that the audience didn’t walk out. 1976 opens January 5th.