FLOWERS IN THE DUSTBIN
28 - 31 October, 12:00 - 22:00
Flatland Gallery, Casco, the Academiegalerie & Expodium
In 1967 Bruce Nauman made a neon sculpture that proclaimed: “The true artist helps the world by revealing mystic truths.” As the artist himself explained, this statement was “on the one hand a totally silly idea and yet, on the other, hand I believed it. It’s true and it’s not true at the same time. It depends on how you interpret it and how seriously you can take yourself.”
The artists in Flowers in the Dustbin present a very personal vision of the world we inhabit. The works are all rooted firmly in the everyday, but are also born in the artists’ imagination, and present an alternative view of reality. Their materials are drawn from the world around them, the issues that concern them, the stuff of everyday lives. Laughter, surprise, provocation, association, tricks, all are at the service of these works that create their own special relationship between art and life, destabilising both. Everyday life is interpreted with a sense of humor and irreverence, thereby encouraging a new perception of our contemporary lives.
Miguel Calderón and Pierrick Sorin both adopt a playful and irreverent approach. Sorin’s caricatural sketches of the banalities of an uneventful life are enacted by a rather pathetic character who is somehow at once endearing and. annoying. Sorin’s work parodies serious endeavour, so questioning the choices we make and value we hold. His actions and mise-en-scène have something of Dada and Fluxus in them. The absurdity of some of Calderón’s work similarly rings of dada. His bad-boy reputation belies his subversion of the hypocrisy of social values taken at face value. Mark Leckey’s exploration of urban youth culture echoes that of Calderón, and offers a critique of Western society at the end of the twentieth century. Music is central to Leckey’s work. Daniela Steinfeld also draws on song lyrics, film and theatre for inspiration. Using the simplest of props to transform herself into often grotesquely strange characters with peculiar anatomies, Steinfeld playfully explores various transformations, transitions and metamorphoses. Dara Friedman manipulates ordinary actions in her films so that they appear to be something completely different from what in fact they are.
Clare Manchester― Curator
Clare Manchester is a critic, curator and editor based in Lausanne and London. She is currently working on an exhibition based around an exploration of the artist's body in film and video, spanning contemporary practice from the 1960's to the present. She contributes regularly to magazines such as Flash Art and Lapiz.