The Bread & Roses: Artists and the Class Divide group exhibition is on a the Museum of Modern Art Warsaw (MOMAW), opening February 18 and running to May 1.
Drawing on philosopher Pierre Bourdieu’s characterisation of the artist as “the dominated part of the dominant class”, the show explores the role and status of the artist within society, as one that exists between privilege and oppression: “We are interested in the process that transforms the existential and institutional figure of the artist into a medium that some use to demonstrate and modify their entanglement in the mechanisms of socio-economic divisions.”
In acknowledging “the tension that characterizes the current political and social conflicts” in Poland and by extension its art world, Bread & Roses aims to interrogate this ambivalence by placing work by Polish artists within an international context.
Jankowski asked actor Nina Hoss to curate his work for the show, who had not heard anything of his work and so agreed. She has selected mainly cinematic works made between 1992 and 2015, which will be shown across three parts: in a room with a cinema, in a room with film sets, and in a room where TVs will be playing.
The audience will have an opportunity to see Jankowski’s work through Hoss’ eyes, along with the commonalities she found in looking at it.
The panel accompanies Ich kenne kein Weekend. Archive and Collection René Block, an exhibition at Berlinische Galerie dedicated to the “manifold and interdisciplinary” work of the German gallery owner, art publisher, collector and exhibition organiser and is moderated by Berlin-based art critic Kolja Reichert.
Other participants include Director of Salzburg’s Museum der Moderne,Sabine Breitwieser, artist and curator of next year’s Manifesta in Zurich, Christian Jankowski, curator Gabriele Knapstein and exhibition organiser Jean-Hubert Martin.
Known for taking his audience to the darker corners of the internet, Jon Rafman unites with Christian Jankowski‘s interactive performances for Field Vision, running at Berlin’s Future Gallery from May 1 to June 13. The result is a series of travel experiences, where the focus is on the less dominant senses in an attempt to construct the surroundings of full-time web browsers based on photos from feed aggregator sites.
Shot entirely in black and white ‘The Eye of Dubai’ (2012) is the documentation of Jankowski’s first trip to the United Arab Emirates. Denying himself the privilege of sight, Jankowski and his film crew experience the entire journey blindfolded. Along with entertaining shots of the crew’s misfortune, the travelogue is stunningly visual. The architectural extremes of the region are shown, along with long nature shots that include one of Jankowski handling a falcon in the desert. A crew from BBC World News followed the process of producing the project, with one episode from the collaboration accompanying the film screened in the gallery’s hallway.
A pile of blindfolds lies on the floor of the main space. Above them hang large-scale photos sharing the title ‘The Eye of Dubai’ with Jankowski’s video and capturing amusing moments alongside the stunning surroundings. Rafman’s ‘YASIAOF (Chinese Medicine)’ (2015) and ‘YASIAOF (Woodsman)’ (2015) archival pigment prints are in the gallery’s main and left room. Printed on alu dibond and painted with dripping resin both images present a keyboard in the foreground covered in a distracting amount of trash. It’s a remake of similar images found on the web, accompanied by an oil paintings of a sunset over an Arcadian landscape.
A small boxlike enclosure called ‘Cubby’ (2015) after the children’s playset is one of two of Rafman’s DIY inspirited installations. Consisting of a mattress and a wooden box covered in pastel green-coloured PU chip foam, it acts as a home cinema allowing the viewer to lie back while watching a video custom-made for these surroundings. The film takes up almost the entire space of the inner room.
The accompanying ‘Cabinet’ (2015) installation is another box-like structure made of the similarly crude materials as of ‘Cubby’, accessible through a door in the back. One person at a time can sit in a wooden seat with high sides and watch a video projected on one side.
‘Erysichthon’ (2015) screens in the small space an consists of photos from various feed aggregator sites, along with shots that seem taken from some kind of data storage. Often a hand holding a smartphone appears and is used as the video’s second screen, demonstrating the way many people browse the web in the belief that they are multi-tasking. That idea fits well with the video’s title, named after a cursed character in Greek mythology, who no matter how much he ate was never satisfied, eventually eating himself in hunger. **