Sarah van Lamsweerde
Young-Hae Chang Heavy Industries
This group show loosely reconsiders an important non-event, an exhibition that never happened... namely, that of the Situationist International's proposal to build a labyrinth in the Stedelijk Museum, in 1959. Curated by the participants of de Appel Curatorial Programme.
Marinus Boezem, Justin Gosker, Jan Hoeft, Krõõt Juurak, Sarah van Lamsweerde, Ieva Misevičiūtė, Robertas Narkus, Pavel Pepperstein, Michael Portnoy, Jan Rothuizen, Reinaart Vanhoe, Young-Hae Chang Heavy Industries, Katarina Zdjelar.
This project is curated by the participants of de Appel Curatorial Programme 2013-2014: Renata Cervetto, Kris Dittel, Lara Khaldi, Emma Panza, Aneta Rostkowska, Kate Strain.
Father, Can’t You See I’m Burning?* is an exhibition curated by the participants of de Appel Curatorial Programme. The group show, which presents over ten newly commissioned artworks, will open on 25 April, and will be accompanied by an extensive programme of public events and performances. Conjured from the ashes of a radical inheritance, this project loosely reconsiders an important non-event, an exhibition that never happened… namely, that of the Situationist International’s** proposal to Willem Sandberg to build a labyrinth in the Stedelijk Museum, in 1959.
Father, Can’t You See I’m Burning? allows us – as artists, audience and curators – to infiltrate the building of de Appel arts centre, testing different tools and inhabiting existing infrastructure. In doing so, we twist conventions into losing sight of their assigned functions and force them to mutate in a strikingly subtle way. For example, marketing platforms become exhibition spaces, presentation spaces become studios, storage rooms become stages, stairwells become sofas, and collaboration becomes corruption.
With the artists installing transformative possibility through the exhibition, perhaps we do get a glimpse of the imagined labyrinth that lies buried deep in our cultural lineage. Jan Hoeft punctuates the building with non-functional gutters and guttural vibrations; Katarina Zdjelar infuses the space with skepticism, undermining a hegemonic language; while Robertas Narkus stages a performance where energy is sensed rather than made apparent. Jan Rothuizen invites our grandparents to edit his wall painting; Ieva Misevičiūtė invites our friends to sculpt an anthropomorphic institution. The artworks are not only spread out in de Appel arts centre and stretched across its façade, but exist online too: Young-Hae Chang Heavy Industries inhabit the website (www.burning.deappel.nl), using digital concrete poetry to ask paranoid questions about what happened to all the artworks that didn’t make the cut; and Pavel Pepperstein’s short story, Tunnel is channelled through online newsletters. Back in the gallery-cum-office, Michael Portnoy’s collaboration with a ‘roasting’ agent (Rán Flygenring) wittily propels the development of artworks in the exhibition into the future. Krõõt Juurak reveals, through performance, the disagreements and internal tensions between the curators of the exhibition; Reinaart Vanhoe charges at the language of advertising and sponsorship; Sarah van Lamsweerde auctions words; Marinus Boezem instructs us to burn art for a better understanding of what is at stake; and finally, exiting through the emergency stairwell we’re led straight to the punctuating black spheres of Justin Gosker. All the while, the curators quietly quarrel in the corner.
The opening night will include ongoing performances by Krõõt Juurak, Robertas Narkus, Michael Portnoy, and Katarina Zdjelar. These performances, as well as a programme of events, will unfold and return throughout the duration of the exhibition.
About de Appel Curatorial Programme
Initiated in 1994 as an in-house international training trajectory for young curators, the Curatorial Programme of de Appel arts centre offers its participants hands-on experiences and skills for the further development of their professional career. Each year the programme culminates with the collective development of a final project at de Appel arts centre.
* The title is taken from a phrase in a dream case in Freud’s The Interpretation of Dreams, chapter VII ‘The Psychology of the Dream-Processes’. Jacques Lacan also analyzes the same dream in The Four Fundamentals of Psychoanalysis.
**The Situationist International (SI) was an organisation of social revolutionaries, made up mostly of avant-garde artists, intellectuals and political theorists, active from 1957 to 1972.
Special thanks to Ammodo, Lloyd Hotel & Cultural Embassy and Kunsthalle Beijing
Image: Michael Portnoy, Google Office 0.2 by The Improvement League, Taipei Biennial, 2010, multi-room participatory installation. Courtesy Taipei Fine Arts Museum.
Marieke Istha, coordinator T +31(0)20 6255651 email@example.com
Opening: April 25, 6–9pm
de Appel arts centre
Prins Hendrikkade 142 1011 AT Amsterdam The Netherlands
Tuesday – Saturday 12 am – 8 pm
Sunday 12 am – 6 pm
The exhibition is closed on 26 April due to King’s Day