Fri Art - Kunsthalle Fribourg
Petites-Rames, 22
0041 (0)263232351 FAX 0041 (0) 263231534
dal 1/7/2004 al 12/9/2004
++41 0 263232351 FAX ++41 0 263231534
Segnalato da

Sarah Zürcher / Fri-Art

calendario eventi  :: 



Fri Art - Kunsthalle Fribourg, Fribourg

An exhibition on the transformation of space: international, local, urban, humanitarian, political, conflictual, economical, financial, military, institutional, global, individual. Artists: Multiplicity, Stefano Boeri, Anselm Franke, Francesco Jodice, Armin Linke, Sarat Maharaj, John Palmesino, Ann-Sofi Roennskog, Eyal Weizman.

comunicato stampa

Neutralité | Neutralität | Neutralità | Neutralitad | Neutrality


Neutrality is an exhibition on the transformation of space: international, local, urban, humanitarian, political, conflictual, economical, financial, military, institutional, global, individual.

As we take a further step into the shards of contemporaneity, not to have a policy, not to stand for something, not to take part, not to participate, to be a-political is becoming more and more a difficult, contrasted, almost immoral condition. Yet these difficulties, are also an entry point to the unveiling of the comeback of the physical condition, of the materic body of our contemporary territories. Entering the contemporary condition seemed in the last decade a drift towards a common vanishing point, where cities, territories, matter, nature would have become virtual, interchangeable, generic: the set of ephemeral activities.

What has happened?
Conflicts and terrorism are scattered throughout the world, entrapped in the meanders of the physicality of their scenarios. Nature is making its energetical return, reality is back in all its materic strength. History has started moving again.

Neutrality is a specific way of organising matter in space in order to create an operational zone where to manage conflicts, contradictions, diversities. Neutrality is a modality of creating a counterpart to the hierarchical understanding of geo-politics, of identity, of war, of the nuances of peace and internationalism in the wake of globalisation. An attempt to turn our gaze towards reality, away from our theories. To be neutral, in a certain sense and under certain circumstances, can be understood as the ultimate contemporary political and powerful condition. A condition that engages individuals with the spatial organisation of our institutions, our nations, our wars.

The exhibition is articulated around different modalities of observing the contemporary city through the concept of neutrality. Different authors tackle various aspects of the difficulty of representing the contemporary condition. It is conceived as a journey through the shifting grounds of contemporary conflicts, infrastructural implementations, globalisation, individuality, imperialism.

A series of maps represent various aspects of Switzerland as an extra-territorial, non-confictual space. In this sense neutrality is manifest in space at least in three different modalities. In order to manage conflicts and maintain –or augment– a powerful presence on the international scene, Switzerland had to form itself as a clearly defined island, protecting its borders, establishing a clear and distinct relation towards its neighbouring powers.

The second way by which neutrality reveals itself in the materic space of the Swiss territory

Is by opening its ways to the continent, managing natural hazards in the Alpine environments in order to keep the passes open, implementing economical, political, infrastructural relationships with the elsewhere.

A third aspect of neutral spaces is connected to the dissolution of conflicts, to the management of differences –in opinions, in origin, in religion, in gender, in social status, etc.– to the smallest elements possible, to the construction and edification of a neutralized urban environment that encompasses the entirety of the surface of Switzerland. Creating precise, clear, distinctions, walls, gates, fences, boundaries, thresholds that maintain the overall structure of the territory and its federal institutional form as a non-centred self-organised autonomous system. A series of maps and diagrams will illustrate these issues in detail.

Institutional spaces
Armin Linke presents a series of photographs that depict all the international institutions and their architectural, physical appearance. The neutral spaces where a world without borders is managed and implemented.

Anselm Franke, Eyal Weizman

We used to imagine geopolitics as the great play of power across horizontal surfaces. Cut apart by linear borders, the state system - a territorially based juridical formation - appeared to dominate all forms of sovereignty over individuals and action. The old political order has splintered into discontinuous territorial fragments set-apart and fortified by makeshift barriers, temporary boundaries or invisible security apparatuses. These shreds are ISLANDS - externally alienated and internally homogenized extraterritorial enclaves. Whether one is looking at zones of humanitarian intervention, set in response to states of emergency or extreme humanitarian crisis, at military camps, deployed for the defence of foreign investments, natural resources, international transport or on behalf of nationals abroad, or at special enterprise zones, set as manufacturing enclaves for the financial exploitation of advancing nations by advanced ones, one sees evidence of the international-law principles of 'suspended sovereignty' and of 'extraterritorial jurisdiction', on which ISLANDs rely, violating juridical territoriality in a way that sets a clear challenge to the sovereign power of the state in which they exist.

Silent crowds
Francesco Jodice's works on the inhabited landscape as a projection of individual desires and wishes is depicted as a contemporary fresco. A huge collage of photographical portraits of individuals that apparently establish no interaction one with the other.

Alps in movement
A preview of Armin Linke's film. The aim of the project 'The Alps in Movement' is the realization of a Film recording the variety and intensity of the fluxes, both natural and artificial, which now characterize the eight countries [the Cipra still refers to seven countries, omitting Montecarlo] that form the Alps. The Alps are among the largest natural ecosystems in Europe, and its main biological reserve. They have been touched more than any other of the world's great mountain chains by the presence of man, and are the main recreational and tourist area in Europe. Over 1,200 km long, the Alpine chain directly involves eight countries, but its environmental and economic importance goes far beyond the 12 million European citizens who live in the region. In present-day Europe the territory of the Alps is an example of the complexity of the social, economic and political relations which characterise the contemporary world and which go beyond the borders of single states.

Stefano Boeri, Maddalena Bregani, Francesco Jodice, Francisca Insulza, Giovanni La Varra, John Palmesino
Multiplicity is an agency for territorial investigation based in Milan. Multiplicity is concerned in contemporary urbanism, architecture, visual arts and general culture. Multiplicity detects the physical environment, researching for the clues and traces produced by new social behaviours. Multiplicity promotes and organizes projects in various parts of the world. Multiplicity is an ever-changing network, recruited in the various geographical area of intervention. The research network is formed by architects, geographers, artists, urban planners, photographers, sociologists, economists, filmmakers, etc. Multiplicity projects and produces installations, intervention strategies, workshops and books about the recent and hidden processes of transformation of the urban condition. Actually, the Multiplicity network counts on around eighty researchers, involved in three major projects: USE-Uncertain states of Europe (Bordeaux 2000, Brussels 2001, Tokyo 2001, Perth 2002, Milan 2002); Border Devices (Berlin, Venice, Rotterdam, Paris, Geneva 2003); Solid Sea, a study of the Mediterranean presented at Documenta 11. Other recent projects include The Chinese Connection (Perth International Arts Festival 2002) and Space World – a Void workshop (CCA Kitakyushu 2002). Publications include: USE-Uncertain states of Europe (Skira, Milan 2003); Mutations, (Actar, Barcelona 2001, with various authors); Mutations, (TNProbe, Tokyo 2000, also by various authors), Geografie und die Politik der Mobilität, (Generali Foundation, Vienna 2003, by various authors).

Stefano Boeri, Milan in 1956, is an architect and teaches Urban design at the University of Venice (IUAV) and at the Berlage Institute of Rotterdam. He is director of Domus-International Architecture Magazine. He is a regular contributor to the cultural supplement of the financial newspaper 'Il Sole 24 Ore'. In discovering the characteristics and evolutionary principles of contemporary territories, he has often collaborated with photographers and artists and organized several interdisciplinary events (including those for the 6th and 7th Biennale of Architecture, for Documenta X, and for the XIX Triennale of Milan).

Francesco Jodice, Naples 1967. Photographer/architect. His artistic research examines the relations between the new trends of social behaviour and the urban landscape of the world's major cities. His works include: Cartoline dagli altri spazi, Motta 1997; Abitudini temporanee; What We Want, Actar 2002; the Secret Traces; 100 storie; The Crandell Case. He has worked and exhibited in Europe, Japan, The United States, Argentina, Canada, and Australia. Before becoming a photographer he worked as a cartoonist, a heavy metal drummer a policeman and an architect. He is presently working on a medium length 35mm film, called The Gift.

John Palmesino, Lugano 1970. He has conducted research studies into the transformations of the contemporary urban condition in Europe, with particular attention to the changes in the Swiss urban structure. He has participated in several workshop and a seminars and has lectured in Milan, Rotterdam, Amsterdam, Zurich, Tokyo, Perth, Bordeaux, Porto, London and Berlin. He is co-author of Lessico Postfordista, dizionario di idee della mutazione, Milan, Feltrinelli, 2001; an interdisciplinary book on the connections between knowledge, production processes, culture and cities in contemporary societies. He taught at EPFL Lausanne, in Milano and Genova.

He is head of research at the Institute for the Contemporary City, 'ETH Studio Basel' where he works with Jacques Herzog, Pierre de Meuron, Marcel Meili and Roger Diener on a research on the current state of affairs of major international cities.

Armin Linke was born in 1966. He lives and works in Milan. The objects of his photographic research include the world of art, design, performance, theatre, fashion, science and economics. His work has been presented at the Venice Biennale and Documenta. Linke also works as a fashion photographer contributing to magazines such as Vogue. Over the last decade Linke has worked on the project 4flights, which is a 360-degree interpretation of the profound metamorphoses that urban and natural landscapes have undergone due to current political changes and modern man-made constructions. For this project Linke has produced thousands of images. Organized as both an atlas and an impossible archive, his work is a courageous undertaking which sheds new light - from the South Pole to Las Vegas, from Lagos to the ex-Soviet Union - on the transformations taking place in today's landscape and on man's place in this new world.

Eyal Weizman is an architect based in Tel Aviv and London.

The exhibition and the catalogue ' A Civilian Occupation, The Politics of Israeli Architecture' he edited/curated together with Rafi Segal were banned by the Israeli Association of Architects, but were later shown at the Storefront Gallery for Art and Architecture (New York, February 2003), in 'Territories' at the Kunst-Werke in (Berlin, May 2003) and at the Witte de With Center for contemporary art (Rotterdam, November 2003). The catalogue is now published by Babel Press and Verso Press. He has conducted research and a map-making project for the organization B'tselem on violations of human rights by architecture and planning in the West Bank.

Opening 2 July at 6 pm
3 july - 12 september
Discussion with SARAT MAHARAJ 3 September at 7 pm.

Fri-Art – 22 petites-Rames - CH - 1700 Fribourg
Heures d'ouverture : Ma-ven 14-18h, sa -di 14-17 h Nocturne je 20-22 h

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