ICA - Institute of Contemporary Arts
The Mall
+44 02079303647 FAX +44 02073060122
Two exhibitions
dal 25/3/2013 al 8/6/2013

Segnalato da

Naomi Crowther

calendario eventi  :: 


Two exhibitions

ICA - Institute of Contemporary Arts, London

The eclectic work of Bernadette Corporation over the past 19 years: it started with the foundation of a high-end fashion label and later came to include film and writing, exploring consumerism and branding strategies of New York and the impact of 9/11 on the city. To coincide with the 60th anniversary of the ground-breaking exhibition Parallel of Life & Art are on view original art works by the Independent Group: beyond traditional boundaries and conventional disciplinary areas.

comunicato stampa

Bernadette Corporation
2000 Wasted Years

Curated by Stefan Kalmár and Richard Birkett of Artists Space, New York with Gregor Muir and Matt Williams of ICA, London.

The ICA, in association with Artists Space, New York, presents the first retrospective in the UK of Bernadette Corporation.

One of the most significant art collectives working today, Bernadette Corporation (BC) has been influential in presenting a conceptual alternative for making art. They emerged in 1993 in a New York obsessed with Calvin Klein and Kate Moss but hit by recession. Their eclectic work over the past 19 years, which started with the foundation of a high-end fashion label and later came to include film and writing, explores consumerism and branding strategies while reflecting the economic and social history of New York and the impact of 9/11 on the city. While three figures – Bernadette Van-Huy, John Kelsey and Antek Walczak – have always been central to BC, the collective has collaborated with a number of artists including Rita Ackermann, Mark Borthwick and Chloe Sevigny. This exhibition at the ICA traces BC‟s work and influence and presents their major fashion, film and writing projects for the first time in London.

The group formed as a „scene‟ at Club USA, a nightclub that existed between 1992 and 1995 near Times Square. Kelsey recalls, “Nobody had money, everybody was young, so it made a lot of sense to band together and do things collectively. There was a real DIY ethic at that time.” Nineties New York was dominated by big brand fashioning advertising and the creative crossover between art and fashion was in bloom. In response to this, the first project launched by Bernadette Corporation was their own high-end fashion label. Mimicking the visual strategies of the fashion world they explored the hierarchy of fashion and art and the economic drive of the fashion world, while working on fashion shoots with the world‟s glossiest magazines. This irony saw them insert references to immigration and class as well as counterfeit goods into fashion shoots, and audition models for their catwalks through the Yellow Pages.

The label lasted until 1997 and was followed by the magazine Made in USA in which fashion imagery and advertising was placed alongside philosophical art texts. At the height of the anti-capitalist movement in 2001 they started working on the film that would eventually become Get Rid of Yourself mixing images of anti-global protest with footage of Chloe Sevigny re-performing sections of activists‟ speeches in a kitchen. In the middle of editing Get Rid of Yourself, 9/11 changed everything – including the film. In response to these changes, BC started a collective writing project that resulted in a novel by one hundred and fifty writers - Reena Spaulings (2005). Loosely based around the central character, an identity-less, blank, bland model, it is also a story about the post-9/11 New York landscape. While BC has continued to make films, explore promotional campaigns and instigate collective writing, recent projects have seen more emphasis on the „object‟, following the failure of a cinema project in all but its merchandising content.

The ICA exhibition will present projects from the last 19 years, including the bodies of work mentioned above, through a timeline mapping their archival material. This is accompanied by a pavilion, designed in collaboration with Gideon Ponte, which will present a series of works including Media Hot & Cold, 10 hardcover publish-on-demand books, and video work Get Rid of Yourself. Vitrines and lightboxes will present a variety of Bernadette Corporation „merchandise‟ such as Mug Stanzas, digital printed coffee mugs and Retrospective Scarves, 7 inkjet printed silk scarves. In addition, graphic wall based works including Smash False Dreamlands and Village Voice novel review will also punctuate the gallery spaces.

In conjunction with Bernadette Corporation the ICA presents The Independent Group: Parallel of Art & Life in the Reading Room, which brings together a range of artworks, design objects and ephemera. The Group met at the ICA in Dover Street from 1952-5 and included Alison and Peter Smithson, Richard Hamilton, Eduardo Paolozzi, William Turnbull, Frank Cordell and writer Lawrence Alloway. Celebrated today as the so-called “Fathers of Pop”, the Group worked with art, science, technology and popular culture. The Group challenged modernism working beyond traditional boundaries and conventional discipline areas. Bernadette Corporation continues that trajectory, in their own words "these are the final days of contemporary art and we‟re happy to have a seat at the table." (Bernadette Corporation, 500 Words: Artforum)

An accompanying series of talks and events will look more closely at the artists collective in the context of the history of the ICA, an organisation itself founded by artists.

About Bernadette Corporation
Bernadette Corporation is currently based in New York as a collaborative with three principal members, Bernadette Van-Huy, John Kelsey and Antek Walczak. Bernadette Corporation has had solo exhibitions at galleries and institutions including Galerie Meyer Kainer, Vienna (2011); Galerie NEU, Berlin (2010); Greene Naftali, New York (2009); Kunsthalle Zürich (2008); Künstlerhaus Stuttgart (2007); Witte de With, Rotterdam (2005); Galerie Meerrettich, Berlin (2003); and American Fine Arts, New York (1997). The collective‟s work has been exhibited in group exhibitions including; Nothing in the World But Youth, Turner Contemporary, Margate (2011); 4th Moscow Biennial of Contemporary Art, Moscow (2011); Not in Fashion: Fashion and Photography in the 90s, Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt (2010); 9 Screens, MoMA, New York (2010); Manifesta 7, Trentino-South Tyrol (2008); Cult of the Artist, Hamburger Banhof, Berlin (2008); Shandismus. Autorschaft als Genre, Wiener Secession, Vienna (2007); Make Your Own Life: Artists In and Out of Cologne, Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia (2006); Whitney Biennial 2006, Day for Night, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (2006); Populism, Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam (2005); The Big Nothing, Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia (2004); Ex-Argentina, Museum Ludwig, Cologne (2004); Let’s Entertain, Walker Arts Center, Minneapolis, Minnesotta (2000). Publications by Bernadette Corporation include The Complete Poem (Walther König, 2011); Eine Pinot Grigio, Bitte (Sternberg Press, 2007); and Reena Spaulings (Semiotext(e), 2005). Bernadette Corporation‟s ready-to-wear women‟s fashion line appeared in magazines including i-D, The Face, Dazed and Confused, Index Magazine, Harper’s Bazaar, Purple, and Visionaire between 1995 and 1998.

This project is supported by the Foundation for Contemporary Arts; Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts; and the Friends of Artists Space.


The Independent Group
Parallel of Art & Life

The ICA is delighted to present original art works by the Independent Group to coincide with the 60th anniversary of the ground-breaking exhibition Parallel of Life & Art.

The Independent Group met at the original ICA in Dover Street from 1952-5 and comprised architects Alison and Peter Smithson, James Stirling and Colin St John Wilson; artists Magda Cordell, Richard Hamilton, Nigel Henderson, John McHale, Eduardo Paolozzi and William Turnbull; music producer Frank Cordell and writers Lawrence Alloway, Reyner Banham and Toni del Renzio. Celebrated today as the so-called Fathers of Pop, the Group worked with art, science, technology and popular culture. From horror films to theories of evolution, modern architecture to Marilyn Monroe, this group project worked beyond traditional boundaries and conventional disciplinary areas.

The exhibitions organised by the group – Growth & Form; Tomorrow’s Furniture; Parallel of Life & Art; Man, Machine & Motion and sections of This is Tomorrow – were highly innovative, both in terms of layout and the range of objects displayed. Building on the ICA’s Surrealist legacy, the Independent Group shows introduced the new age of modernity and mass culture to the gallery space. Reflecting the Group’s collage mentality, new technology and high end design were juxtaposed with avant-garde art.

Unlike other London venues, ‘none provided a foyer, a hearth which the artists and his audience can gather in unanimity, in fellowship, in mutual understanding and inspiration’ stated Herbert Read in the exhibition catalogue 40 Years of Modern Art. Even before the Group was assembled by Assistant Director Dorothy Morland, members gravitated to the ICA as the only place to see and discuss modern art and modern culture. Hamilton, Paolozzi and Turnbull exhibited at the Dover Street inaugural exhibition, 1950: Aspects of British Art and continued their involvement throughout the 1950s and 1960s, curating a wide range of public exhibitions and events, underpinned by clandestine discussions and gatherings.

The ICA exhibition will include paintings, drawings and photographs by John McHale, Magda Cordell, Nigel Henderson, Eduardo Paolozzi and Richard Hamilton, alongside related designed objects and ephemera from the Independent Group. Evoking the ICA’s original home in Dover Street in the 1950s, the exhibition will be designed to give viewers a sense of ‘The Home of the Avant Garde’ which first attracted this collection of creative practitioners.

In addition the exhibition will be accompanied by a two day conference which will bring together leading researchers, practitioners and curators who are working on aspects of the Independent Group. The aim will be to consider ways in which the Independent Group have been, and continue to be, exhibited. Participants will share their knowledge and approaches to this seminal moment in the history of British art and architecture at a very timely moment when the history of the Independent Group has come under increased scrutiny internationally.

Anne Massey is Co-Curator and organiser of the conference along with Matt Williams, Curator ICA.

Image: Bernadette Corporation

Press contacts:
Naomi Crowther | Press Officer ICA +44 (0)20 7766 1407 naomi.crowther@ica.org.uk
Sam Talbot | Sutton PR +44 (0)20 7183 3577 sam@suttonpr.com

Press Day: 26 March 2013

Institute of Contemporary Arts ICA
The Mall, London, SW1Y 5AH
Gallery opening hours: Tues - Sun 11am – 6pm, except Thurs, 11am – 9pm. Closed Mon.
Admission free

Radical Disco
dal 7/12/2015 al 9/1/2016

Attiva la tua LINEA DIRETTA con questa sede