“I found out about various companies that place these racks in foyers or (semi) public spaces after seeing them around town and phoned them up and asked them to install them,” writes Gili Tal about the the postcard display racks, called ‘Appellation Contrôlée,’ on show at London’s Cell Project Space. Fixed to one white wall and looking indistinguishable from any other arts and entertainment advertising at a given urban venue, the cardboard squares promoting Hair the musical, ‘Amazing Lego Art’ and Underbelly Festival (presented by Hilton) are unassuming but ominous. “They are functioning, so the companies select the contents according to what they think the audience is at Cell and then come and refresh the flyers every couple of weeks.”
The London-based artist is writing via email about the installation for Step into Spring, a joint show with Jenna Bliss running June 21 to August 6. The latter New Yorker’s contribution includes a series of black and white, degraded films screening on several TVs on pedestals — running lambs, a film of only people’s shoes walking in and out of a department store, a full close up of a speculum being inserted into a vagina. Some of the short, looping videos have text: “All human bodies have become the final frontier.”
The exhibition takes the idea of institutional common rooms, like in universities or schools, as a point of departure and is accompanied by an essay, written by Tal in conversation with Bliss. Here the artist extends her ongoing interest in capital and its effects on people to ‘urban restructuring,’ where neoliberal markets depend on but ultimately destroy the existing cultures and neighbourhoods being displaced by property development. **
Gili Tal + Jenna Bliss’ Step in Spring joint exhibition is on at London’s Cell Project Space, running June 21 to August 6, 2017.