Context and Conceptualism
Opening Reception, Saturday, January 12 from 6-8:30 pm
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There is a roundtable panel discussion with the artists in the exhibition at 3 pm.
In a 1996 article titled "Altered States: The Art of Kendell Geers," Okwui Enwezor questions what happens to context when artists negotiate conceptualism according to museological interests in the 'new internationalism'. In the context of South Africa, he interrogates the particular problematic of working "across cultural and contextual borders."
Siemon Allen appropriates materials specific to South Africa's political history and cultural legacy, engaging with larger discursive narratives of global conceptualism. His installation "Stamp Collection" marks the artist's own mediation on personal and political histories.
Melissa Gould's "From Adler to Zylber," an installation as Holocaust memorial, is comprised of pictograms that represent visual translations of German-Jewish names from an Aushwitz transport list. Gould's project addresses historical memory and territory.
Coco Fusco produces a documentary-style video entitled "Els Segadors" (The Reapers) that questions the notions of nation, citizenship, language, and identity, particular to the context of Barcelona. Hiring actors to sing traditional Catalan songs, including the anthem, Fusco's direction entails performing one's Catalan identity for the camera. Interested in the hybridized and globalized populations of Spain, Fusco is invested in "how old ideas about who belongs are being shattered by the changing realities of a new Europe."
Melissa Gould (MeGo)'s installation project FROM ADLER TO ZYLBER, on her web site.