Report from Bordeaux: Visit to CAPC/Musée d'Art Contemporain's shows of Franz Ehrard Walther and the group show "Ce qui ne sert pas s'oublie"
The exhibition 'Franz Erhard Walther: Le Corps décide' was initiated by WIELS Centre d’Art Contemporain, in Brussels – see a video of its iteration here – and has been co-produced together with CAPC musée d'art contemporain in Bordeaux, alongside The Franz Erhard Walther Foundation. The exhibition is accompanied by a beautiful publication that includes brightly colored pop up shapes that spread throughout the book.
From Wiels' website... "Franz Erhard Walther’s exhibition offers an in-depth look at an influential German artist whose pioneering work straddles minimalist sculpture, conceptual art, abstract painting, and performance all while positing fundamental questions about the conventional idea of the artwork as an immutable, obdurate pedestal or wall-bound thing. Bringing together pivotal works made between the 1950s and the present, this exhibition focuses on Walther’s ability to transform notions of object-hood and perception through drawings, paintings, fabric sculptures, participatory forms, language-based works, photographic documentation and archival material."
The exhibition "deals with the mutating statuses of objects in relation to the possible historical narratives, especially those related to colonial past an present and the layers of cultural, spiritual and identity production that stem from them. Objects carry a wealth of immaterial aspects in and around their materiality, constituted by means of the relations they form with others, both human and non-human... This exhibition seeks to understand how our relation to the material world entails endless processes of assimilation, acculturation, re-appropriation, ritualisation which in their complexity whiteness and embody the historical binds in which they are caught." [this and following quotations describing each work are taken from the exhibition leaflet].
The exhibition is accompanied by a French/Spanish publication (Les Presses du Réel, 2015) with contributions by Mathieu K. Abonnenc, Mariana Castillo Deball, Catalina Lozano, Beatriz Santiago Muñoz and Jorge Satorre.
The first room of the exhibition featured 'Killing Pots' (2013–14), a series of sculptural works by Jorge Satorre (1979, Mexico). Information about these pieces can be found in this extensive text by curator Caterina Riva.
Sean Lynch (1978, Ireland), 'A blog-by-blow account of stone-carving in Oxford', (2014) an installation composed of photographs, sculptures and a video projection "exploring the oeuvre of nineteenth-century stone-carvers John and James O’Shea, who carved monkeys, cats, owls and parrots on buildings in Oxford and Dublin."
The show closes with two works produced in 2007 by Uriel Orlow (1973, Switzerland): "Lost Wax" and "A Very Fine Cast (110 Years)". The first deals with the production of brass-casting artifacts in Benin City, Nigeria, produced via this already out of use technique. The latter (below) is a series of 28 engravings displaying descriptions of artifacts from museum cataloging systems, revealing the racist and colonial narratives that lie within the looted objects that are now part of European museum collections.
- Report from the Amsterdam Art Weekend, 27–30 November 2014 (2 December 2014)
- Report from London's Frieze week 2014 (27 October 2014)
- Report from Madrid: Exhibitions during Apertura 2014 Gallery Weekend (15 September 2014)
- Report from Glasgow: Lecture at The Common Guild and studio and gallery visits (4 December 2013)
- Report from Paris: FIAC week, 21–28 October 2013 (5 November 2013)
- Report from Athens: "AGORA", 4th Athens Biennale 2013 (4 November 2013)
- Report from New York: Gramcsi Monument, visiting critics at ISCP, Carol Bove at The High Line and galleries route (23 September 2013)