The theme this year is ‘Authenticity?’ and ‘How To Stay Cool in the Post-Digital Age’. Bringing together diverse perspectives on these concepts from arts and technology, the event will be host to a long line-up of events, exhibitions, screenings, performances and talks that will respond to the way we present ourselves against the backdrop of a growing desire to remain authentic within a time where authorship is becoming increasingly irrelevant and indefinable.
Some notable events include three different screenings by Ben Rivers, performance (A)ROMA))NCE by Peter Sattler & Kristinn Gedmundsson, a lecture by Rob Horning on authenticity and domination, and exhibition Authenticity is Dead, Long Live Authenticity, featuring work by Oliver Laric, Amalia Ulman and Elise van Mourik, among many others.
See the Impakt Festival website for details.**
The [In Confidence] group exhibition is on at Los Angeles’ As It Stands, opening October 7 and running to October 20.
The show comes with little information in regards to the themes, aside from a list of artists — including Manuel Arturo Abreu, Cristine Brache, Devin Kenny, Winslow Laroche, Alec Recinos and Amalia Ulman —and a question that asks “What are you hiding?”.
That’s followed by a list of nine garbled lines of numerical and alphabetical characters that look like a encrypted code or a URL, followed by a “key” that says “confidence”. In this case the appropriate definition of the word is probably less about self assurance and more about secrecy.
See the FB event page for details.**
The artist, whose work often looks at power structures and their associated aesthetics, confronts her own privilege through a dramatisation of her own position, and one that the press release calls “a position of criticality not accessible to all.”
The new work will expand on previous online and IRL project Privilege (2016) that featured as part of the Berlin Bienniale. The accompanying text also includes a quote by feminist theorist Kristeva, “One does not give birth in pain, one gives birth to pain”. The title is two-fold, nodding to politics as well as women in labour.
Visit Arcadia Missa webpage for more details.**
Ulman is ‘Resident 60’ of the emergent “(2-day artish residency)” that has also hosted the likes of Puppies Puppies, Georgie Nettell and Luis Miguel Bendaña in various locations including Rome, Lisbon, Berlin and Thessaloniki. According to the website, Caribic “exists in the present moment”, moving from its most recent base in Athens, near Life Sport, to the Nevada United States capital to develop “uncorrupted and intuitive formats together with artists”.
There’s little information on the process and outcomes of the residency itself except that Ulman will be hosted by artist and curator Hans-Christian Dany and the findings following these short residencies are promised online at centerforrealgrowth.com, which you can apply to join via email on the website.
Los Angeles-based Ulman’s career has gathered strength following her four-month durational Instagram performance ‘Excellences & Perfections’ (2014). She’s since presented solo exhibition The Destruction of Experience at Evelyn Yard, and participated in major art surveys like Electronic Superhighway at Whitechapel Gallery and Performing for the Camera at Tate Modern.
See the Caribic website for (limited) details.**
The Performing for the Camera group exhibition is on at London’s Tate Modern, opening February 18 and running to June 12.
Featuring over 500 images, the show purports to explore photography as both performance and utility in a survey of works by artists including Yayoi Kusama, Marcel Duchamp, Cindy Sherman and Yves Klein.
Also included in the survey of “vintage prints, large scale works, marketing posters” is Amalia Ulman‘s ‘Excellences & Perfections’ four-month durational performance on Instagram.
See the Tate Modern website for details. **
Header image: Amalia Ulman, ‘Excellences & Perfections’ (Instagram Update, 1st June 2014) (2015).
A massive survey of the impact of the internet and computer technologies on art practice is happening at London’s Whitechapel Gallery opening on January 28 and running until May 15.
Electronic Superhighway will bring together over 100 artworks spanning four decades between 1966 and 2016. It will be curated in reverse, so that the viewer will walk progressively towards the most historical experiments in media and sensory technology.
The survey show will include work by Amalia Ulman, Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, The Yes Men, Hito Steyerl, Ryan Trecartin, Olia Lialina, Lynn Hershman Leeson, who’s work Lorna was one of the first interactive installations, and Nam June Paik, from whose musings on the future of the internet and art in 1974 the show borrows its title.
See the Whitechapel’s event page for more details.**
Cookie Gate happened in Dublin’s Ellis King in July 2015 during a period in our making history where all information around an art work or its object is attached so loudly to it – where words around art are as redundant as they are needed. The work by the 32 artists, including Thea Govorchin, boychild and Kari Altmann addressed the moment of communication between art work and audience. By thinking about the structures of desire inherent in looking at adverts (and Facebook art show press releases, for example) the show, which ran 10 July – 15 August, aimed to dissect what the press release referred to as the ‘pre-engagement’ part of expression. Do artists second-guess what to make for an audience? Is this a passive movement between consumption and outwards communication or is it transparent? If it is transparent is this because its ‘about’ giving in to desire and working with this also as a mode of identity making as an artist? What are the materials and material objects that get caught up in all of this? Maybe you just want a cookie, and another, and another.
The press release reads: “Corporations, brand names, and images become rituals, obsessions, and diversions. Consumption is made all but too easy”.
Amalia Ulman showed ‘Safety Net’ (2014) out of turquoise thongs attached together and spread across a garage door. The work is a weak safety net and possibly acts a little bit like desire does. Another piece that holds form and shape with tension was Dublin-based Fiona Hallinan’s ‘Pendants’ (2015). These are a group of necklaces made from objects the artist found while walking around and are pinned to the wall beautifully in diamond forms, as though on display in a jewellers with a black matte background and well lit. Gina Folly’s ‘Life’ (2014) and ‘Untitled (2015) are two tiny wax ears resting on the surface of a pillow, half-embedded; half-listening out. One ear was made last year and the other this year. You are slowly hearing and consuming more (everything) -that is all you are doing in Folly’s piece. Kari Altmann presents what looks like a portrait and upright miniature trampoline called ’Stretch, Flex and Extend’ (2015). Attached to the silver frame by bungees is an image of a cream or some pills with the word ‘extend’ on the front and a plant coming out of the top, shrouded in a cloud of mystic visible pink aroma. Altman’s piece is transparent.
There are two works with faces with wide smiles and white teeth with braces. One is ‘Rigged V1’ (2015) by Auto-Italia‘s Kate Cooper and displays all at once an open mouth, a grimacing mouth that can’t talk for its braces and bridges, and an example or perhaps an offering of dental perfection.
boychild’s ‘Patrick’ (unbound)’ and ‘wu (threshold)’ (both 2015) look like x-rays or an image that is trying to come through. They are haunting and minimal and un-clear. They are possibly the works that communicate the most about outwards communication:
“Sometimes we go shopping for bare necessities and sometimes we are looking for something to really really satisfy us”. **
Exhibition photos, top right.
Header image: Adriana Minoliti, ‘Sexy’ (2015), courtesy the gallery, Ellis King, Dublin
Pioneering the evolution of audiovisual language both on and offline since the 60s, cinema legend Jonas Mekas presents The Internet Saga, a solo exhibition running from May 6 to November 22. It’s located at two sites, the Palazzo Foscari Contarini –a sixteenth century building that is now a Burger King restaurant –and video art space Spazio Ridotto.
Curated by curatorial duo Francesco Urbano Ragazzi in collaboration with Zuecca Projects, the project is dedicated to art on the web and launched on the May 6 and 7 in conjunction with the 56th Venice Biennale. Ragazzi chose the Burger King at the Palazzo Foscari Contarini as an exhibition space to serve “as a metaphor of [the] Internet” representative of the “relationship between eras and materials, history and trade, fake and authenticity which are elements which characterize it”.
The exhibition opened with a Skype performance by Amalia Ulman who phoned in to the Internet Saga press conference at the My Art Guide Meeting Point in Venice on May 7 (you can see an excerpt of the video that screened here). It was organised as a tribute to the influential artist and to launch Ulman’s own )TITRE( web calendar contribution to the project. Meanwhile, Mekas will continue to broadcast a collection of over 500 videos until the exhibition’s November close; personal entries from an online journal he’s been keeping since 2006. The work is undisruptive as it plays on four screens already present in the building, “juxtaposing itself to Palazzo Foscari Contarini, by modifying it without interfering with its reality, without touching it, as it would at a virtual level”.
Mekas is also exhibiting ‘To Petrarca’ (2009), a seventy-minute sound piece comprised of recordings made in the streets of New York that merge with the sounds of Andy Warhol’s funeral. Photographic transparencies are attached, and filter light like stained glass, to thirty-two windows facing the courtyard. They are 768 reproductions of mostly unpublished frames from Mekas’ body of video work.
Spazio Ridotto functions as a cinema, presenting a selection of Mekas’ video work in the second location. The project also has two official websites to compliment the exhibition, www.internetsaga.com, updated daily, and a web calendar created by Ulman located at www.titre.name, which will be updated irregularly “by artists and intellectuals who reflect on time in the Internet era”. **
Exhibition photos, top right.