Bright Ugochukwu Eke
5 continents, 10 biennales, 20 artists. The event is attempting a double-agency. It is a model of the festival exhibition: produced in dialogue with curators and artistic directors of ten biennales; and part of the national program of the "Vilnius - European Capital of Culture 2009". Yet, artworks have been selected that reflect upon the conditions of their production and processes of cultural and socio-political displacement and alienation (in the place they were made) - in denial of representativeness.
Curator Simon Rees
Artists: Edgar Arceneaux (United States), Alfredo & Isabel Aquilizan (Australia/Philippines), Nadiah Bamadhaj (Malaysia/Indonesia), Matthew Brannon (United States), Matthew Buckingham (United States), Yu Cheng-Ta (Taiwan), Harry Dodge & Stanya Kahn (United States), Annika Eriksson (Sweden), Shaun Gladwell (Australia), Wong Hoy-Cheong (Malaysia), Emre Hüner (Turkey), Jesper Just (Denmark/United States), Jane Lee (Singapore), Scott Lyall (Canada), Darius Mikšys (Lithuania), Grace Ndiritu (United Kingdom), Sherman Ong (Malaysia/Singapore), Kate Rohde (Australia), Raeda Saadeh (Israel/Palestine), Bright Ugochukwu Eke (Nigeria).
CODE SHARE takes its name from the commercial airline practice of sharing passengers, services, landing rights, and technical resources – based upon partnership agreements. Often travellers book a flight upon one airline and arrive at the gate to find that the plane and its staff is wearing the livery of a different partner airline – and serving food and drink associated with another national culture when we were looking forward to a specific set of flavours or the taste of ‘home’! This might come as a pleasant surprise for the adventurous traveller but disappoint that flyer wanting to relax to familiar sounds and flavours two hours ahead of touching down.
This strategy, and reference, is especially prevalent at this moment when national carriers all over the world are facing bankruptcy or take-over. And it keys into the sense in which code sharing has evolved as a model of post-Fordist efficiency. Airlines were in the advance-guard of global corporatization and conglomeration; as companies merged, resource-sharing contracts were struck, and airport and landing licenses were purchased, so that major carriers consolidated the supply chain. Similar patterns have emerged within the circuits of contemporary art exhibition culture in which large-scale festival events – especially biennales – dominate international press coverage, and consume corporate and governmental sponsorship. A definite hierarchy of exhibitions, and exhibiting institutions, has formed in concert with these processes (in colonial and capitalist order) that are lionized by art professionals.
CODE SHARE is attempting a double-agency. It is a model of the festival exhibition: produced in dialogue with curators and artistic directors of ten biennales; and part of the national program of the “Vilnius – European Capital of Culture 2009”. Yet, artists, and artworks have been selected that reflect upon the conditions of their production and processes of cultural and socio-political displacement and alienation (in the place they were made) – in denial of representativeness.
The exhibition also ironizes the fact that from its position at [the] capital of culture in Europe art from Istanbul, New York, Sydney, and Taipei is presented as being peripheral.
The artists were selected from: Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art, Dak’Art Biennale, Istanbul Biennial, Liverpool Biennial, Sharjah Biennial, Singapore Biennale, SITE Santa Fe Biennial, Biennale of Sydney, Taipei Biennial, and the Whitney Biennial of American Art.
With many thanks to: Gregory Burke, Fangwei Chang, Freya Chou, Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev, Alan Cruickshank, Paul Domela, Felicity Fenner, Serene Foo, Sophie Forbat, Lance Fung, Terry Harding, Manray Hsu, Ruth Hu-hui Ju, Henriette Huldisch, Vasif Kortun, Hongjohn Lin, Kee Hong Low, Peter McKay, Shamim M. Momin, Maren Richter, Genoveva Rueckert, Mats Stjernstedt, Martin Sturm, Viviane Then, Anna Waldmann, and Jonathan Watkins.
“Vilnius – European Capital of Culture 2009” is principally funded by:
The Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Lithuania
Vilnius City Municipality
CODE SHARE has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council
The Australia Council for the Arts, its arts funding and advisory body
And received support from National Arts Council Singapore
Image: Thomas Manneke, A view from the Television Tower, Vilnius 2004. Courtesy the artist and Diana Stigter Gallery, Amsterdam
For more press information contact: Renata Dubinskaite Renata@cac.lt or T: +370-5-262 3476
Openining January 14
Contemporary Art Centre
Vokieciu 2 LT- 01130 Vilnius Lithuania