Longitudes

Newsletter #44 – June 2012


In June

Launch of the publication 'Amikejo' at the border tri-point (drielandenpunt) where the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany meet, Saturday 2 June, 17h.

Lecture "The curatorial contract: analogies and case studies", Centro Galego de Arte Contemporaneo (CGAC), Thursday 14 June, 20h, and visiting lecturers, Máster en Arte, Museología y Crítica Contemporáneas, Universidad de Santiago de Compostela, Friday 15 June.

+ info:



Launch of the publication 'Amikejo' at the border tri-point (drielandenpunt) where the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany meet, 2 June, 17h


| UK |

Coinciding with the opening days of Manifesta 9, Latitudes will launch the publication 'Amikejo' at the border marker which represents the apex of the former Neutral Moresnet-Amikejo at Vaalserberg. This tripoint (drielandenpunt) that joins the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany, was once a four-border-point before Neutral Moresnet was absorbed in Belgium. 

Confused? Then read Ryszard Żelichowski's essay included in the publication titled "Neutral Moresnet and Amikejo – The Forgotten Children of the Congress of Vienna" which offers an overview of how Neutral Moresnet (the state 'renamed' Amikejo in 1908) came into existence.

The publication accompanies the year-long cycle of exhibitions that took place at the Laboratorio 987, the project space of MUSAC, León, thoughout 2011, with exhibitions by Pennacchio Argentato (29 January–3 April 2011); Iratxe Jaio & Klaas van Gorkum (9 April–12 June 2011); Uqbar (Irene Kopelman & Mariana Castillo Deball) (25 June–11 September 2011); Fermín Jiménez Landa & Lee Welch (24 September 2011–15 January 2012).

Editor: Latitudes
Publisher & Distribution: Mousse Publishing
Format: 22.5 x 15.5cm, 216 pp, hardcover
Texts: Giorgio Agamben, Theo Beckers, Latitudes, Prof. Peter Osborne, Georges Pérec, Prof. Dr. Menno Schilthuizen, Ryszard Zelichowski
Language: English and Spanish
ISBN: 9788896501832
Price: 26 Euro
Purchase via Mousse (Milan) or Motto (Berlin).

Photos: Latitudes
| ES |

Coincidiendo con la inauguración de Manifesta 9, Latitudes presentará la publicación 'Amikejo' en el trifinio (drielandenpunt) en el que convergen las fronteras de los Países Bajos, Bélgica y Alemania, y que antaño fue un punto cuadrifinio antes de que Neutral Moresnet-Amikejo fuese finalmente absorbido por Bélgica.

¿Confuso? Lee el texto "Moresnet Neutral y Amikejo: los hijos olvidados del Congreso de Viena" del Prof. Ryszard Żelichowski que se incluye en la publicación y que repass la historia de Neutral Moresnet (el estado 'rebautizado' Amikejo en 1908).
La publicación acompaña el ciclo de exposiciones que tuvo lugar en el Laboratorio 987, el espacio proyectual del MUSAC, León, a lo largo del 2011, con exposiciones de Pennacchio Argentato (29 enero–3 abril 2011); Iratxe Jaio & Klaas van Gorkum (9 abril–12 junio 2011); Uqbar (Irene Kopelman & Mariana Castillo Deball) (25 junio–11 septiembre 2011); Fermín Jiménez Landa & Lee Welch (24 septiembre 2011–15 enero 2012).

Edita: Latitudes
Publica & Distribuye: Mousse Publishing
Formato: 22.5 x 15.5cm, 216 pp, tapa dura
Textos: Giorgio Agamben, Theo Beckers, Latitudes, Prof. Peter Osborne, Georges Pérec, Prof. Dr. Menno Schilthuizen, Ryszard Zelichowski
Idioma: inglés y español
ISBN: 9788896501832
Precio: 26 Euro
Compra via Mousse (Milan) o Motto (Berlin).

Más fotos de la publicación aquí.

Creative Commons Licence
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Rita McBride "Public Tender" at MACBA and "Blind Dates" programme with Barcelona-based artists

Bartomeu Marí and Rita McBride (right) in front of the audience seating at McBrides' 'Arena' (1997).

Coinciding with the opening of Rita McBride's solo exhibition "Oferta Pública / Public Tender" (18 May–24 September 2012) that opened last night at MACBA, Bartomeu Marí, director of the museum and curator of the exhibition, was in conversation with the artist in the second floor galleries, where McBride's "Arena" (1997) has been installed.

Below the stream of @LTTDS' tweets posted during their conversation (chronologically from bottom to top):


One of the activities programmed around the exhibition is "Blind Dates", with the participation of Barcelona-based artists who will intervene in McBride's "Arena" once a month: Tamara Kuselman (20 June, 16–19.30h), Laia Estruch (18 July, 20h), Jordi Ferreiro (August, during museum opening hours), Ryan Rivadeneyra (19 September, 20h), Miguel Noguera (20 September, 20h). + info here.

Some of them made it to the talk...

From top to bottom, left to right: Jordi Ferreiro, Ryan Rivadeneyra, Tamara Kuselman and Laia Estruch.

All photos: Latitudes | www.lttds.org

Ignasi Aballí at ARTIUM and Latitudes' text on 2009 project in Beijing and a 2010 interview

Ignasi Aballí "This is not the end". Courtesy of the artist.

On the occasion of Ignasi Aballí (Barcelona, 1958) exhibition 'This is not the end' at ARTIUM, Vitoria-Gasteiz (curated by François Piron, on view until 2 September 2011), we wanted to share two projects in which Latitudes collaborated with the Catalan artist.

Firstly, the interview 'Rank & File' between the artist and Latitudes for which we discussed his ongoing 'List' series. The text was originally published in 'The Last Star Ledger' (Issue #4 of 'The Last Newspaper' catalogue, New Museum, New York, 2010).


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.

'Ignasi Aballí: Nothing, Or Something'

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)
 
1 Ignasi Aballí, 0-24 h., Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona, 2005, p.25
2 Sem Actividade / Without Activity, Museu de Portimão, 2008
3 Ignasi Aballí, 0-24 h., Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona, 2005, p.11

Text originally published in 'Nothing, or Something', the publication accompanying the exhibition that took place in the Suitcase Art Projects, Beijing, China, 22 May–22 July 2009. 



This is the blog of the independent curatorial office Latitudes. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
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.

RECUERDA: Presentación de la publicación 'Amikejo': Martes 22 Mayo, 20h en Múltiplos (c/ Lleó 6, 08001 Barcelona)


NOTA DE PRENSA

Presentación de la publicación 'Amikejo' editada por Mousse Publishing en colaboración con MUSAC.

Martes 22 Mayo, 20h
Múltiplos (c/ Lleó 6, 08001 Barcelona)

Presentación a cargo de Fermín Jiménez Landa (artista) y Latitudes (editores y comisarios del ciclo expositivo 'Amikejo').

La publicación concluye el ciclo de exposiciones 'Amikejo', que a lo largo del 2011 ha incluído muestras de Pennacchio Argentato; Iratxe Jaio & Klaas van Gorkum; Uqbar (Irene Kopelman & Mariana Castillo Deball y Fermín Jiménez Landa & Lee Welch en el Laboratorio 987, el espacio proyectual del Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Castilla y León (MUSAC). (+ info...)

El volumen incluye textos sobre cada proyecto escritos por los comisarios del ciclo, así como reimpresiones de Giorgio Agamben ("Notas sobre el gesto", 1996) y Georges Perec (extractos de "Especies de espacios y gestos Otras Piezas", 1974 ), vistas de las exposiciones y biografías de los artistas participantes.
 

Además cuenta con una serie de ensayos de académicos y científicos especialmente escritos para la ocasión:

Peter Osborne (Profesor de Filosofía moderna y director del Centro de investigación de filosofía europea moderna de la Kingston University London) con el texto ‘Fragmentos del futuro': Notas sobre el espacio proyecto" que se centra en peculiar idea de la 'sala de proyectos', espacio que se caracteriza por ser total en su idoneidad para un determinado tipo de temporalización: la temporalización del proyecto. ¿Cuál es su distintiva espacialización?, Y ¿cómo le afecta la codificación específicamente artística de un proyecto?.

Ryszard Zelichowski (Profesor y Director de Investigaciones Científicas en el Instituto de Estudios Políticos de la Academia Polaca de Ciencias) contribuye con el texto "Neutral Moresnet y Amikejo - Los niños olvidados del Congreso de Viena" ofrece una visión general de cómo Moresnet Neutral (el estado rebautizado como 'Amikejo' en 1908) llegó a existir.

Theo Beckers (Ex-profesor de Estudios de Ocio de la Universidad de Tilburg y en la actualidad miembro del cuerpo docente del Centro de Sostenibilidad de Tilburg y profesor visitante de la Academia china de ciencias)** escribe el texto "El tiempo libre. Auge y caída de un proyecto social", en el que rastrea la relación de la sociedad occidental con el trabajo y el tiempo, desde Séneca el Joven, a través del auge de las fábricas y de los 'Principios de Administración Científica' (1911) de Frederick Winslow Taylor, hasta la actual confusión hoy en día entre trabajo y ocio.

Menno Schilthuizen (Científico de investigación en NCB Naturalis, Cátedra para la biodiversidad de los insectos en la Universidad de Groningen y Profesor asociado en la Universidad de Leiden) escribe "Sobre las imágenes especulares en la naturaleza: cómo formas idénticas pueden ser totalmente distintas", principio que se refleja en la exposición del dúo Uqbar entorno a la quiralidad: en animales y plantas asimétricas, a veces ambas formas especulares existen lado a lado, pero a veces sólo existe una de ellas y el otro es "prohibido".


Título: Amikejo
Edita: Latitudes
Publica y distribuye: Mousse Publishing en colaboración con MUSAC
Fecha publicación: Abril 2012
Formato: 22.5x15.5cm, 216 págs, tapa dura
Idioma: inglés/español
Distribuye: Mousse Publishing
ISBN: 9788896501832
Precio: 26 Euros
Compra online

La publicación estará disponible durante la presentación.

Múltiplos es una librería y distribuidora independiente de Barcelona especializada en libros de artistas.


All photos: Latitudes | www.lttds.org (except when noted otherwise in the photo caption)
Creative Commons Licence
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

SAVE THE DATE: Presentation of the publication 'Amikejo' with artist Fermín Jiménez Landa. Tuesday 22 May, 20h at Múltiplos, Barcelona

All photos: Latitudes | www.lttds.org

Latitudes will present the publication together with 'Amikejo' artist Fermín Jiménez Landa, who will discuss the project presented together with Lee Welch for the final exhibition of the cycle. Jiménez Landa will discuss one of the works, 'Himno Nacional' (2011), in which a marching band was commissioned to compose and play a new national anthem. Composed in the most archaic tradition, markedly romantic, military and patriotic, the anthem enacted a parodic attempt to reach a futile objective: the conquering of a small island in the Aegean Sea through invasion-by-sound.

The publication accompanies the cycle of four exhibitions by Pennacchio Argentato (29 January–3 April 2011); Iratxe Jaio & Klaas van Gorkum (9 April–12 June 2011); Uqbar (Irene Kopelman & Mariana Castillo Deball) (25 June–11 September 2011); Fermín Jiménez Landa & Lee Welch (24 September 2011–15 January 2012) that took place at the Laboratorio 987, the project space of MUSAC, León, thoughout 2011. (+ info...) 

Editor: Latitudes 

Publisher & Distribution: Mousse Publishing 

Format: 22.5 x 15.5cm, 216 pp, hardcover 

Texts: Giorgio Agamben, Theo Beckers, Latitudes, Peter Osborne, Georges Pérec, Menno Schilthuizen, Ryszard Zelichowski 

Language: English and Spanish 

ISBN: 9788896501832 
Price: 26 Euro 

The publication will be available for purchase during the presentation
Múltiplos is an independent bookshop that specialises in artists publications.


Pennacchio Argentato's show "Conversion" at Wilkinson Gallery, London

Below images of "Conversion" the recently opened solo show of Amikejo artists Pennacchio Argentato. The exhibition is on view in the Upper Gallery of Wilkinson gallery in London until 17 June 2012.

General view of the exhibition.

General view of the exhibition.
'Set in the Same Universe', 2012. Acrylic resin, print transfer (200 × 95 × 45 cm) 
'West End', 2012. Aluminium, cord (Dimensions variable)
(Wall) 'Shield#0 – #00001', 2012. Acrylic resin, iron, print transfer, bike hooks (130 × 92 × 40 cm), (Right, free standing) 'Set in the Same Universe', 2012. Acrylic resin, print transfer (200 × 95 × 45 cm) 
'FAQ', 2012. Plexiglas, digital projection (35×70 cm). All images: Courtesy the artists and Wilkinson Gallery, London

(Excerpts from the gallery press release):

"Conversion" presents sculptures as free standing agents, hanging off the wall and suspended from the ceiling. As if overcome by a crisis of aesthetic register, a stylistic battle takes place between the artworks’ broad formal references, ranging from minimalist tendencies and optical illusion, to gothic font text paired with “new age” video.

Cast in acrylic resin from the front glass of a car, the artists characterize the four shield-like sculptures Shield#0- #00001 as troops deployed in a row, prepared for battle. According to the artists’ selfdevised system, all matter, including the artists’ themselves, are convertible entities; this conversion is likewise reflected in our daily lives, whether it be in terms of converting file formats or currency.
 
FAQ operates as a sculpture illuminated by a video projection of mathematical fractals abstracted into an array of shifting lights, colors and forms. Acting as a visual anchor, it only but alludes to the presence of answers, instead manifesting as a form of light amusement or distraction. In formal contrast, sculptures such as Long Bones, placed at the entrance to the gallery, as well as West End, a ladder sculpture suspended from the ceiling, adopt a more tectonic composition.
 
The incandescent photographic flames that optically engulf the freestanding sculpture, Set in the same universe function as the fuel that formally unites the subsequent artworks in the exhibition. Taken from a larger image of civil riots found in recent news, the sculpture acts as a centripetal force within the exhibition by introducing an element of reality into the fictional discourse and diversit of styles that are otherwise present in the gallery.

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Founded in 2005 by Max Andrews and Mariana Cánepa Luna, Latitudes is a curatorial office based in Barcelona, Spain, that works internationally across contemporary art practices.

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