The May 2019 Monthly Cover Story ‘Thinking like a drainage basin: Lara Almarcegui’s ‘Concrete’’ is now up on Latitudes' homepage: www.lttds.org
“Lara Almarcegui’s current exhibition at the CAIRN art centre in Digne-les-Bains, southern France, focuses on the nearby Bléone river, its geology, and its exploitation. Latitudes has written an essay entitled ‘Thinking like a drainage basin’ for the accompanying catalogue. Lara’s project Béton (Concrete) has two parts. The first, seen here, involves the floor of the art centre being covered with crushed cement, gravel and sand. This raw material is the remains of several concrete structures — weirs — that were placed in the river in a failed attempt to stabilise a riverbed that had been extensively dug out over the preceding decades to produce gravel for the construction industry. The watercourse and its ecology is now being restored, and the weirs were recently removed.”
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—> After May it will be archived here.
Cover Stories' are published on a monthly basis on Latitudes' homepage featuring past, present or forthcoming projects, research, texts, artworks, exhibitions, films, objects or field trips related to our curatorial activities.
- Archive of Monthly Cover Stories
- Cover Story—May 2019: Buenos Aires in Parallel 1 May 2019
- Report from Buenos Aires during Art Basel Cities: Buenos Aires, Semana del Arte and arteBA fair 22 April 2019
- Max Andrews and Mariana Cánepa Luna in Art Basel Cities: Buenos Aires' Parallel Rooms programme on 13 April 2019
- Cover Story—March-April 2019: "Icelandic refraction" 3 March 2019
- Cover Story—February 2019: Schizophrenic Machine (1 February 2019)
- Cover Story—January 2019: “Seesaw” (7 January 2019)
- Cover Story—December 2018: "Treasures! exhibitionism! showmanship!" 1 December 201
(Above and below) Installation views of the exhibition ‘Béton’ by Lara Almarcegui at the CAIRN centre d'art, Digne-les-Bains, 2019. All photos: François-Xavier Emery.
Latitudes has collaborated in the bilingual catalogue ‘Lara Almarcegui. Béton’ (French/English) recently published by Silvana Editoriale on the occasion the exhibition, with the new essay ‘Thinking like a drainage basin’. The publication includes an introduction by Giulia Pagnetti (curator of the exhibition and director of CAIRN Centre d'art), a second essay titled ‘Lara Almarcegui's building sites’ by Natacha Pugnet, and a conversation between the artist and Winfried Dallmann (Associate Professor, Department of Geosciences, UiT The Arctic University of Norway, Tromsø) titled ‘Earth Calculation’.
‘Lara Almarcegui. Béton’
April 2019, 48 pages, 24 x 17 cm
Texts by Natacha Pugnet, Latitudes and an interview between the artist and Winfried Dallmann.
Published by Silvana Editoriale
Edited by CAIRN centre d'art
Purchase here for 10 Euros.
- Writing archive on Latitudes' website;
- Review – ‘Domènec. Y la tierra será el paraíso', adn galería, Barcelona, frieze.com, 13 March 2019
- Opinion – ‘Frank Zappa’s Genre-Defying ‘Civilization Phaze III’’, frieze, January-February 2019, Issue 200, and frieze.com, 14 January 2019
- Review – ‘Te toca a tí’ [It's your turn], Espai d'art contemporani de Castelló, art-agenda, 7 January 2019
- art-agenda review of Frieze week 2018 15 October 2018.
- Catalogue essay – ‘The Kørner Problem’, in the monograph ‘John Kørner', ed. by Maria Nipper. Published by Roulette Russe, 2017. 19 February 2018
"The Kørner problem” essay by Max Andrews in the monograph "John Kørner" published by Roulette Russe
In his essay, Max tries to define what "The Kørner problem” (the title of the essay) might be:
(...) "The apparently ‘wicked’ problems and appalling catastrophes that interpenetrate Kørner’s works are manifold. The upsurge in jihadist terrorist activity in Europe since 2015 and its fallout are unavoidable (whether vestiges of the Charlie Hebdo shootings and the Bataclan attacks in Paris, suicide bombings in Brussels and Manchester; or truck attacks in Nice, Berlin, Barcelona; rampaging attacks in London, and so on). The civil war and the rise of ISIL (ISIS, Daesh) in Syria and the exacerbating effects of climate change and mega-drought that affected the region are inescapable. The European debt and migrant crisis are here. Yet elsewhere Kørner also brings to mind what at first seem like unrelated problems: the 2011 Tōhoku tsunami and the calamity of the Fukushima nuclear power plant meltdown, human trafficking, et cetera, states of exception that seem to confirm that the problem is evermore radical, atrocious, ungrounded—more diffuse while remaining intractably real. American pop star Ariana Grande knows this as well as Kørner. Released in spring 2014, three years before the suicide bombing of her concert at Manchester Arena, her most successful single to date is titled “Problem”. We are witnessing new kinds of wicked problems and Kørner paints accordingly."
In preparation for the catalogue essay, in July 2017 Latitudes visited Kørner's impressive "Altid Mange Problemer" mid-career exhibition at Kunsthal Charlottenborg, the largest exhibition of his works to date, gathering paintings and sculptural pieces from 2004 to the present.
- Latitudes' writing archive
- Latitudes' "out of office" 2016–2017 season 1 August 2017
- Max Andrews essay on Christopher Knowles for NoguerasBlanchard at Liste 2017 21 July 2017
- Mariana Cánepa Luna reviews Ana Jotta’s “Abans que me n’oblidi (Before I forget)” exhibition in art-agenda 11 November 2016
- '2006 Problems' exhibition and publication by John Kørner, Victoria Miro Gallery, London 29 November 2006
- Copenhagen trip. 'Woman with 24 problems' by John Kørner 30 September 2006
Christopher Knowles was born in New York City, USA, in 1959. Lives and works in New York. He has taken part in several exhibitions, among which: 'In a Word', Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, USA, curated by Anthony Elms and Hilton Als (2015); 'Secret Codes', Galeria Luisa Strina, São Paulo (2014); 'The Sundance Kid is Beautiful', The Louvre Museum, Paris, France, 2013; 'Merci Mercy', 980 Madison Avenue, New York (2013); 'Ecstatic Alphabets/Heaps of Language', MoMA, New York (2012); 'En el primer cercle', Fundació Antoni Tàpies, Barcelona (2011); 'Poor. Old. Tired. Horse', Institute of Contemporary Arts, London (2009); 'Visions of the Frontier', curated by Robert Wilson, Institut Valencia d’Art Modern (2009); 'Glossolalia: Languages of Drawing', Museum of Modern Art, New York (2008); 'Get Lost: Artists Map Downtown New York', New Museum Project, New York (2007); 'Learn to Read', Tate Modern, London (2007); 'Extraordinary Rendition', NoguerasBlanchard, Barcelona (2007).
Knowles' is represented by NoguerasBlanchard, Barcelona / Madrid; Gavin Brown's enterprise, New York / Rome; and Office Baroque in Brussels.
|Read here: https://issuu.com/latitudes/docs/4_the_last_star-ledger/2|
ARTIUM's 'This is not the end' includes the work "Tomar medidas" (Taking Measures, 2009), in which nine instruments are displayed measuring things we cannot see: dust particles, time, electrical fields, noise, temperature, intensity of light, radiation, etc. The first version of "Tomar medidas" was produced for 'Nothing, or Something' (22 May–22 July 2009), an exhibition curated by Latitudes for Suitcase Art Projects, the project space of the Today Art Museum, located on three floors of the Yintai retail centre in Beijing – see images of the exhibition.
Following is the essay included in the small publication 'Nothing, or Something' produced alongside the exhibition – see images of the publication.
|Detail of the publication "Nothing, or Something" published by Today Art Museum and edited by Latitudes.|
The morning before Ignasi Aballí’s ‘Nothing, Or Something’ opened, we couldn’t help but overhear an American businesswoman having a breakfast meeting at our hotel. “We’re working very much with intangibles”, she declared – and, we had to concur, so were we. Aballí’s works for Suitcase Art Projects address immateriality, residues and traces. He prompts us to consider things that we cannot perceive directly or are too ordinary to be properly noticed. What is perhaps philosophy’s central and most enduring question – ‘Why is there something rather than nothing?’ – is simultaneously approached as a precise existential experiment and as if with the shrug of a silent comedian.
Despite drawing on the formal language of modernism’s impulse towards reduction and the ‘white cube’ of the museum as much as commonplace materials and unremarkable elements of daily existence, ‘Nothing, or Something’ has nevertheless been created for a situation that is neither fully ‘art’ (though presented under the auspices of the Today Art Museum), nor ‘life’, nor public space – but for a shopping centre. Walter Benjamin’s vast The Arcades Project (1927–1940) located the bustling arcades of nineteenth-century Paris – early versions of the contemporary mall – as heralding a decisive shift to the speed and commodification of things which signaled the emergence of the modern age. Following Benjamin’s concerns, Aballí’s project is preoccupied by the parameters of display while being experienced through a collision and confusion with its surroundings. The windows in which it takes place are located throughout three floors of the Beijing Yintai Centre, a recently opened retail destination hosting high-end fashion, jewelry and watch manufacturers in the heart of Beijing's Central Business District, in one of the tallest buildings in the city. In the context of an excess of brand visibility, signage and luxury product presentation strategies, the eight conceptually interlinked works which comprise ‘Nothing, or Something’ seek a counterpoint and temporarily make room for a different kind of looking, a slower revelation and, to borrow from Marcel Duchamp – to whom we will return – a ‘delay in glass’. The constraints and techniques of making something visible, and the very expectation of having something to see, become the projects’ points of articulation.
Please excuse our appearance, for example, wryly offers the visitor an explanation for the apparent lack of anything in the display case beyond the out-of-place presence of pages from the Spanish newspaper El País (which has often been used by Aballí as the basis for his art) which are laid on the floor as if anticipating some messy activity. Summoning an in-between temporality of perpetual waiting, the vinyl text on the window requests pardon for an apparent hiatus in the rhythm of seasonal trends. Aballí’s work from 2005 entitled Próxima aparición / Próximamente / Coming Soon – a one hour film showing the text of its title – similarly places the audience in a irrational situation of viewing where the main event is declaredly taking place at another time. Coming Soon is also the title of the vacated shop scenario of ‘Nothing, Or Something’. Only traces are left on the premises. An inventory of products on sale are detailed in half-removed words on the glass. Torn posters hang from the side walls; dirty marks have been left by shelves at the back; the dusty outline of objects in a forgotten display case. Each is a remainders of what purports to have been a unit dedicated to photographic equipment. The awkwardly appended ‘coming soon’ vinyl text on the window creates some confusion, however, as to what has left and what has yet to appear. Dust has regularly featured as a material in Aballí’s work, bringing to mind not only Dust Breeding (1920) – Man Ray’s celebrated photograph of Marcel Duchamp’s The Bride Stripped Bare by her Bachelors, Even (The Large Glass) (1915–23) partially covered in a thick dusty layer – but less specifically a concern with entropy and the threshold of perception, where something is only readily perceivable through gradual accumulation or through its removal. Dust is “a very complex material ... a terminal, annoying, residual material that we don’t want” as the artist has described – particularly when it comes to photography.1 As he addressed in his recent exhibition ‘Without activity’, so many of the gestures and routines of (especially pre-digital) photography are concerned with cleaning, brushing and wiping-away.2 The depositing of dust also becomes an analogue for the exposure of light on photographic paper and in essence the inevitable passage of time.
Dust is, unsurprisingly, present in the atmosphere of Beijing. In the work Beijing Air, Aballí takes the small volume of the city’s air present in a window display as the subject of what seems to be an encyclopedic annotated diagram cataloguing its actual and speculative, or feared, components. Text fixed to the glass and indicating lines describe the common gases present in air as well as a host of industrial pollutants, various airborne viruses and environmental particulate matter such as pollen. Many artists have commemorated the notion of blankness or explored the radically empty and each different reasons – the void can represent the wiping away of content and yet the preparation for something new. Aballí echoes this legacy – alongside Duchamp once more, whose Paris Air (1919) consists of a small vial of air from the French capital – yet his pseudo-scientific indications that nothingness is in fact not so easily achievable, at least for an earth-bound artist, brings humorous bathos to one of the central myths of the avant-garde.
Taking measures similarly adopts the language of objective inquiry with an absurd twist. Eight identical plinths occupy a vitrine and present scientific instruments which detect and measure invisible forces for the duration of the project – a stopwatch counts time, a digital barometer records the atmosphere pressure, a compass shows the magnetic orientation, a thermometer-hydrometer measures temperature and humidity, while a lux meter detects light. A sound meter measures in decibels alongside an instrument for sensing radiation. It is no surprise that an anemometer reveals that it is not windy in the vitrine. Contrary to immediate, decorative, or pictorial appeals to vision, Aballí proposes an ongoing sensitization to perceptions that escape direct representation. Yet evidently, we are still looking at something and instead our aesthetic attention is displaced onto the design and the presentational mode of these instruments.
The vitrine opposite this, Scenic Viewpoints, presents the visitor with an arrangement of what appears to be blank white sheets of paper taped to the inside of the glass. As with several of the other works, in this shopping centre context it could well seem like an unfortunate-looking temporary situation. Something being changed, remedied, covered over and hopefully overlooked: nothing to see here! Yet the attentive are rewarded with an altogether different vision – looking through the gaps in the white ‘tiles’ through to the reflection in the mirrored back surface of the narrow space, one can piece together an exuberant compilation of sights. Each sheet is an enlarged colour postcard depicting views, events and landmarks from the artist’s home of Barcelona, a city whose popularity as a tourist destination lies in no small part to its presentation as a readily consumable and legible visual ‘brand’. Blankly monochromatic on the outside, Scenic Viewpoints refuses such a generalised overview. Its ecstatic orchestration of wide vistas and saturated spectacles is only visible to a peeping, prying viewer who then can only see a small part at one time, while linking “the abundance of images around us with the scarcity of meaning we can attach to them”, as Bartomeu Marí has described of another of Aballí’s works Revelations (2005).3
The vitrines titled Illuminating and White Cube are sited facing each other. Illuminating consists only of the application of light. Very bright light. The installation of professional film lights which shine out from the vitrine creates a level of luminescence that is evidently excessive. With a seeming lack of anything in particular to illuminate, one is reflected in the mirrored vitrine in the looped process of beholding oneself beholding the work. A counterpoint to the tastefully spotlighted products in the neighbouring shops, the wastefully ‘incorrect’ situation highlights a stark condition of energetic consumption while literally highlighting its context. White Cube provides the backdrop to this intense reflexivity. It cancels the transparency of its vitrine through the application of whitewash on the glass, a technique commonly adopted by empty premises after going out of business. (Not coincidentally, some of the pages of the newspapers of Please excuse our appearance carry stories related to the recession, which are illustrated by closed-up shops.) As with Aballí’s Big Mistake (1998-2005) and other works using Tipp-Ex correction fluid (used to cover errors on writing or typing paper), the artist creates a quotidian monochrome, through a melancholic painting-like blanking-out activity that nevertheless is never properly a painting. If White Cube refers to a spectre of painting, Vitrines for a Vitrine seems to orientate around some missing sculpture or precious object. Yet as if the artist has been perpetually unconvinced by the plausibility of displaying something, no thing is on show – rather it is the condition of display which is demonstrated in a mise en abyme, itself within the regime of visibility of the shopping centre. Three clear acrylic display cases like those used in museums or in chic stores occupy the glass vitrine. Each contains one small photograph of different empty vitrines which the artist has encountered in various cities.
‘Nothing, or Something’ undoubtedly triggers perplexing situations for the shopping public, and the workers of the centre who were more-or-less familiar with the art project’s presence or witnesses to its installation. For many the works may well go completely unnoticed. Are we seeing what we are supposed to be seeing? Where is the work? When is the work? Yet it is not the intention of Aballí’s project to be disingenuous or confrontational. On the contrary, it operates through orchestrating and modifying simple possibilities for observation, deduction and reflection. Something or nothing is happening, is not happening, is not happening any more, or is yet to happen. Enhanced by memory and hindsight the project allows a disarmingly humble visual retirement – the kind of complexity that emerges through ceasing or waiting. How and why are things added and subtracted from the world, or from sight? What is worth looking at, having or keeping, and what is to be doubted or erased? What does it mean to be more aware of the things we cannot see? Perhaps we are all working with intangibles?
– Latitudes (Max Andrews and Mariana Cánepa Luna)
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All photos:Latitudes | www.lttds.org (except when noted otherwise in the photo caption)
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Haegue Yang's 'Symmetric Inequality' (Desigualdad simétrica) exhibition catalogue, sala rekalde, Bilbao
The trilingual exhibition catalogue 'Symmetric Inequality' (Desigualdad simétrica), has just been published following the solo exhibition by Berlin-based artist Haegue Yang (1971, Seoul, Korea) which opened a year ago at sala rekalde, Bilbao (18.12.08–19.04.09 – see images of the exhibition on Latitudes' post from 20 December 2008). The catalogue is the second volume of a two-part publication project that began with the exhibition 'Asymmetric Equality: Haegue Yang', which took place at REDCAT, Los Angeles between 28 June and 24 August 2008.
This second volume documents the installation at sala rekalde and includes texts by Max Andrews of Latitudes; Prof. Jie-Hyun Lim, director of the Institute of Research in History and Comparative Culture of the University of Hanyang and a conversation between Melanie Ohnemus, curator of Portikus, Bart van der Heide, former curator of Cubitt, Pablo Lafuente, critic and editor of the journal Afterall, London/ Los Angeles, Asier Mendizábal, artist, Leire Vergara, former curator of sala rekalde and Haegue Yang.
'Haegue Yang. Symmetric Inequality'
Graphic Design: Katie Hanburger & Gail Swanlund
Publisher: sala rekalde, www.salarekalde.bizkaia.net
Distributor: AGD Libros, Bilbao, [email protected]
ISBN 978-84-88559-58-6 (sala rekalde), ISBN 0-9749831-9-5 (REDCAT)
352 pp., colour, softcover
Opening today, Håkansson's exhibition at the Museo Tamayo (until 20 September) is the outcome of recordings carried out at the Montes Azules, El Triunfo, and Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserves, and photographs and videos obtained over four weeks by twelve remote cameras placed by the artist in different spots throughout the southern Lacandon Rainforest, Mexico.
Curated by Tatiana Cuevas for the Tamayo, the catalogue features an extended essay by Latitudes' Max Andrews. See photos of the catalogue here.
Read about the show on ARTFORUM critics' picks.
'Brave New Worlds', Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, 4 October 07–17 February 08
Accompanying the 'Brave New Worlds' exhibition is a 300-page illustrated catalogue containing essays by Walker Art Center Curatorial Assistants and exhibition curators Doryun Chong and Yasmil Raymond.
The catalogue also includes "correspondent" essays inspired by newspaper reports and penned by art historians, critics, and curators from around the world, including Max Andrews and Mariana Cánepa Luna (Spain), Cecilia Brunson (Chile), Hu Fang (China), Tone Hansen (Norway), Mihnea Mircan (Romania), and José Roca (Colombia). Recent texts by philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah, celebrated author and activist Arundhati Roy, and award-winning foreign correspondent Janine di Giovanni provide additional perspectives on global affairs of the past decade...
Addressing contemporary international art beyond glib expressions of globalism, the exhibition 'Brave New Worlds' assesses the current state of political consciousness and its multiple artistic manifestations in an era characterized by the unraveling of a unified world order. Guided by the questions “How do we know?,” How do we experience?,” and “How do we dream about the world?,” twenty four artists from more than a dozen countries in Southeastern Europe, South America, the Middle East, East Asia, North America, and North Africa propose their own answers in paintings, drawings, sculptures, installations, and videos.
Participating artists: Armando Andrade Tudela, Yto Barrada, Yael Bartana, Mark Bradford, Fernando Bryce, Mircea Cantor, Cao Fei, Banu Cennetoglu, GimHongSok, Runa Islam, Gabriel Kuri, Jorge Macchi, Josephine Meckseper, Zwelethu Mthethwa, Rika Noguchi, Dan Perjovschi, Lia Perjovschi, Walid Raad, Tomás Saraceno, Sean Snyder, Erik van Lieshout, Haegue Yang, Zheng Guogu, and Artur Zmijewski.
More on the exhibition on the Walker web and on the Visual Arts Blog
Max Andrews contributes with an essay called "Hold the front page gizmo: Kirstine Roepstorff’s Where the world wander – the Road to Excelsior" to the inaugural issue of Fleur du Mal, produced under the auspices of DADDY magazine.
Kirstine Roepstorff's work integrates a variety of content ranging from daily newspapers, scientific journals, political weeklys and other found imagery. Fleur du Mal is a reference book for her source material co-opting the specific experience of reading a luxury women's magazine.
DADDY is available at Printed Matter, Inc. (New York), Art Metropole (Toronto), ICA Bookshop (London), Artwords Bookshop (London), a+m bookstore (Milan), The MOCA Store (Los Angeles), PRO QM (Berlin), and at Peres Projects, Los Angeles Berlin.
9 June Update: Here is an-Issuu hosted version of the article
'There are plenty of known knowns in what John Kørner has recently painted: ships and trees, men and women, crocodiles and birds, town and country—and most apparently in'2006 Problems', factories and bicycles. These are modern things that we know we know. And as this commandeered logic continues, we know there are some things we do not know (known unknowns), and still others we don't yet know we don't know (unknown unknowns). It's the known unknown phenomena that belong to the realm of Kørner's sustained symptomatology of problems. Visible in paint as coloured blot marks shaped like elongated eggs or dropped-in droppings, problems often line up in Kørner's works as if notes on a musical stave or blobs of clay on wobbly shelves, latent undifferentiated tissue that's waiting to become more specific. Of course how to paint a problem must have been in itself a problem. We may presently be dealing with the problems of this year, or equally, it could be that there is a host of two thousand and six of these quandaries. Kørner makes paintings and painted ceramics, while, as he insists, he is not really a 'proper' painter. His often vast canvases are foremost a way of communicating through a very direct means and are only paintings later, almost by coincidence. All of this is, needless to say, problematic.'
Extract taken from the catalogue essay of the publication '2006 Problems: John Kørner' by Latitudes' Max Andrews.
'2006 Problems' by John Kørner
Victoria Miro Gallery, London
25 November – 22 December 2006
Exhibition catalogue: Paperback, English, 44 pages, 30 x 23 x 0.6 cm
Purchase here for ₤10.
More photos here.
All photos: Latitudes | www.lttds.org
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.