Monday, December 12, 2011

Various performative modes foreclosed upon

“Woke up this morning, got the old remediation/ deferral of performance blues again.”

Carrie Miller in the Australian edition (3 December) of the Spectator presents a prime specimen of artwank from an unidentified exhibition of contemporary art, presumably in Sydney where she lives:
Performance functions as the absent-presence/ present-absence within this group exhibition. Three broad strands of performance/artwork relationship emerge in a cacophony of object and image forms and traces, indicating something of the manner in which live action haunts so much of otherwise apparently distinct contemporary practice. In one sense the exhibition might be said to be predicated upon the remediation/ deferral of performance (or action) in image form. In another way, it foregrounds the manifestation/ trace/sublimation of live action presented in the form of inanimate objects. Then again, in select moments of “liveness” it presents the artist at work through performance, manifesting in-situ, through time otherwise apparently contradictory impulses towards disappearance and recuperation of performance as both experience and category. Works throughout the exhibition apparently or implicitly claim a lineage in the history of performance, whether in acts of homage or simply as a strategic model. Simultaneously they demonstrate a reinvestment of the performative within object making. Various performative modes are both staged and foreclosed upon: gesture, action, ritual, exploration or journey, labour, theatre, comedy [. . .]
Speaking of inanimate objects, here are Godley & Creme in 1979 with “I Pity Inanimate Objects” from the album Freeze Frame. I bet Flight of the Conchords are fans:

Paul Litterick, ace detective, has identified the above quote as  the work of curator Blair French who put together the exhibition “Nothing Like Performance” for Artspace in Woolloomooloo. The exhibition runs until 22 December so, if you are in Sydney, you will be able to see Paul Donald:
undertake live work daily, 11am-5pm, from the opening of the exhibition until the completion of his work. He will simply – or perhaps not so simply – attempt to build a bridge across the gallery without formal plans or advance engineering. The structure will extend piece by piece, always with the risk of collapse, of failure, with every new action.
I know the feeling.


Phil said...

Totally impenetrable 'academic' alienating ArtWank - an artform in itself. The preserve of Yartz Critics and catalogue scribes. A pox upon them, with all due respec'(animately and inanimately) both jointly ans severally

Phil said...

Yet - they forgot to mention semiotics.

Penny said...

Are you sure that wasn't Sokal?

Stephen Stratford said...

Heh, it does sound like Sokal, but no. Sadly it is genuine, if that is the word.