Installation view of "Producing time in between other things" (2011). Three videos (12' 30'', 5' 22'', 36' 11''), 32 colour photographs (76x115 cm & 50x75 cm), 49 wooden legs, and MDF platforms with objects made by Jos van Gorkum between 1976 and 1996. Photo: Roberto Ruiz. Courtesy: ADN Platform.
More installation photos of the exhibition here (flickr).
The exhibition "The Margins of the Factory" (ADN Platform, Sant Cugat, 25 January–30 April 2014) presents two recent projects by the Rotterdam-based duo Iratxe Jaio & Klaas van Gorkum that are motivated by their interest in art's relationship with labour. Each explores sculptural form and manufacturing processes from the perspective of artists who have not usually made objects. Jaio & van Gorkum undertake what are in part sociological investigations by documenting the local, marginal effects of the displacement of manufacturing industries over the last two generations with the emergence of the global market. Emerging from the artists' personal history and implicating the direct effects of their own vocation as well as work they ask of others, the projects are moreover complicit in asking what kind of industriousness brings value and what political life objects might have.
The exhibition opening featured a performance by British “avant-folk” musician Nathaniel Robin Mann developed for the occasion in collaboration with Jaio & van Gorkum around the raw footage of "Work in Progress" (2013), a film by the artists showing men and women at work in the Lea Artibai region in Basque Country, where they trim rubber parts destined for the global automobile industry.
Photos: Roberto Ruiz.
Mann interpreted the Basque popular song “Oi Peio Peio” – a dialogue between a woman worker and her cruel boss "Peio", who insists she carries on working throughout the night. He keeps telling her to carry on with the next step in the spinning process, until the sun comes up and it is too late to go to sleep. First collected in Cancionero Popular Vasco in 1918, the song was popularized by singer–songwriter Mikel Laboa, founder of “Ez Dok Amairu” (“No Thirteen”), the cultural movement of Basque poets, musicians and artists whose name was a suggestion of sculptor Jorge Oteiza.
Nathaniel Robin Mann performing "Oi Peio Peio" during the exhibition opening of "The Margins of the Factory". Video by Iratxe Jaio & Klaas van Gorkum.
While singing, Mann manually assembled a device which broadcasted his prerecorded voice to a transistor radio, with which he then performed a moving duet. The performance is Nathan's response to the themes and issues explored in the installation of "Work in Progress", infused with his own longstanding interest in work song and traditional music.