Annette Merrild focusses on today's middle classes in a number of European countries, working with photographs of rooms from blocks of flats in different countries. Parfyme Deluxe will light the camp fire and open the field kitchen - and invite more than 40 artists and musicians to bring their tents and camp there.
Show me your living room... Annette Merrild focusses on today’s middle class in a number of Western countries, most of them European. With her matter-of-factly photographic recordings, all from the same particular block of flats in each country, we are allowed inside to see how the middle class lives. All the rooms in each block of flats have been photographed from the very same angle in a linear perspective. There are no people in these rooms: what we get to see are the frames within which lives in these houses are being led. So once we are inside we can look about unashamedly - because the residents are not there. The Room Project provides the spectator with the opportunity to gaze into a number of private rooms - something which we only rarely get the chance to do as a part of our private journeys.
What these photos mainly show is an overwhelming similarity within the individual dwellings, but there are nevertheless slight and surprising departures from the norm and minor national variations. The living conditions of the very poor and the very wealthy have often been the subject matter of art photography; but it is a rare thing, as the case is with Annette Merrild, for middle class life to be the object of investigation. By documenting various ways of life to be found in Europe today, this project becomes a fragile period picture of a time of transition.
Annette Merrild was born in Herning, Denmark, in 1972 but has for most of her adult life been living outside Denmark. Her studies at the Hochschule für bildende Kunst, Hamburg, were completed with a PhD in 2004. Since her first exhibitions in Denmark and Germany, the painting has been her preferred mode of expression, in recent years, however, with graphic elements as well as photography incorporated into a kind of collage. Since 2001, her focus has been on photography, and this has brought about The Room Project - a comprehensive ethnographic and documentary examination of contemporary housing culture.
The exhibition has previously been shown at the Kunsthaus Hamburg and has come into being in co-operation with Peter J. Lassen who has created the exhibition module GRID used for this exhibition instead of the traditional way of hanging the pictures on the walls. At this exhibition, GRID thus reflects the architecture of the blocks of flats which provided the starting point for the project. As a whole, the exhibition constitutes a city-like construction in which the photographs function as focal points for insights into the interior of the buildings (please see 3D model on the left).
Summer camp at Nikolaj, Copenhagen Contemporary Art Center. This summer, more than 40 artists will occupy Nikolaj's Upper Gallery. The artists collective Parfyme Deluxe will light the camp fire and open the field kitchen - and invite a lot of artists and musicians to bring their tents and camp here.
The tent is central to this exhibition. As a symbol, a concept, a protector, and for its function, colour, material and the society and story it represents. Or rather: the tents. All the participants have been asked to design a tent, and these will be placed in the gallery, together with the main tents containing a kitchen, workshops, video projections, etc.
At this point, the exhibition features the following artists:
Action Gallery / Anthony Schrag (CA), aiPotu (NO), Annie Reichert (US), a.a.s (GB), AXE (RS), Christopher Robbins & John Baca (US), Chuck Yatsuk / Justin Rancourt (US), Cosmic Zoom (DK), Dasein (FR), Dept. for Notion and Connexion (DE), Erik Pirolt / Trond Nicholas Perry / Stian Pollestad (NO), Eva la Cour (DK), Flux Factory (US), Gil & Moti (NL), Ian Montgomery (US), Ingen Frygt (DK), J&K (DE/DK), Julia / Ariel / Buster / Pelle (NO/DK), Kunstbiblioteket (DK), Mark Geffriaud (FR), Math Bass & Edie Fake (US), Mathias Pharao (DK), Matt Bua (US), NEPCO (NL), New Beginings (SE), NG (FR), Nick Tobier (US), Niki Russel (GB), Ole Hartvig (DK), Ondrej Brody & Kristofer Paetau (CZ/FI), Parfyme Deluxe (DK/US), Raketa (SE), S. A. Kumar & S. V. Rao (IN), Skammens Vogn (DK), Steffen Jørgensen / Robert Kjær Clausen / Allan Nicolaisen (DK), Summer Guthery (US), The Icelandic Love Corporation (IS), The Video Archive of Nikolaj, Copenhagen Contemporary Art Center (DK), YNKB / mixdialogue (DK)
Opening june 8, 2007
Nikolaj Contemporary Art Center
Nikolaj Plads 10 - Copenhagen