Bulletin 2008

  • Announcement

    Nicolas Robbio - Indirections [2 December 2008 - 15 January 2009]

    TrAIN Core Member Isobel Whitelegg is curating the exhibition ‘Indirections’ (2/12/08-15/01/09) at the Pharos Centre for Contemporary Art in Nicosia, Cyprus.

    Nicolás Robbio’s work begins in an intimate observation of everyday things: common objects, situations, and systems. Attentive to the limits of what is close at hand, he produces a sensitive economy of images. Closely observed details are subtracted, and outlined by drawing onto or cutting into paper and other found materials. These elements are isolated or re-combined to occupy spaces of varying scale and dimension: from individual drawings to notebooks and rooms. They are overlaid between sheets of paper or glass; constructed as new three-dimensional objects, and drawn, incised, or projected on walls.

    Consistently precise, deceptively simple, this method of representation is an intricate synthesis; it brings together diagrammatic outline, illusion and the material qualities of things. The effect is to underline the interstice between reality and representation and also to see the commonplace taken apart and re-assembled from elemental parts and qualities. By careful handling, selection and re-configuration, our objects of general knowledge are re-placed as carriers of personal memory and collective meaning.

    Over the past four years, one of the ways in which Robbio’s work has developed is via focused individual exhibitions and his show for the PCCA Nicosia forms a part of this sequence. Each is approached as a specific project, and becomes in itself a composite work in which previously made works are brought into a new relationship with those created in situ. Across varying media, a clear process of thought emerges. From wall drawings to the subtle placement of objects, drawings and projections, each element suggests an intimate yet indirect relationship to others, to the space that it occupies, and to the situation from which it draws.

    Curator, Isobel Whitelegg, TrAIN Research Fellow, University of the Arts London

    Friday 28 November, 2008

  • Announcement

    South London Gallery Exhibition and Activities

    Rivane Neuenschwander : Suspension Point
    3|10|2008 – 30|11|2008

    Internationally acclaimed Brazilian artist Rivane Neuenschwander completely transforms the gallery space with a site-specific installation. Monumental in scale, yet incorporating minimalist elements including drilled holes, the residual dust and tiny perforations in every frame of a 16mm film, this major new work encompasses a number of discrete but inter-related components.

    Activities:

    Rivane Neuenschwander and Cao Guimarães
    10|11|2008
    7-9pm, £3

    Rivane Neuenschwander and Brazilian artist Cao Guimarães have been collaborating in making films for many years. Introduced by Moacir dos Anjos, this screening presents major collaborative works as well as some of their recent solo videos.

    This event is organised in partnership with the Research Centre for Transnational Art, Identity and Nation (TrAIN), University of the Arts, London and takes place at Wilson Road Lecture Hall, Camberwell College of Arts.

    17|11|2008
    7-8.30pm, £5/£3.50 concs

    Rivane Neuenschwander’s SLG exhibition and her broader practice are discussed by Moacir dos Anjos, Michael Asbury and SLG Director, Margot Heller.

    This event is organised in partnership with the Research Centre for Transnational Art, Identity and Nation (TrAIN), University of the Arts, London and takes place at Wilson Road Lecture Hall, Camberwell College of Arts.

    Please visit the South London Gallery website for more details.

    Wednesday 05 November, 2008

  • Introduction

    About Mieke Bal

    On the 19th of November 2008 Deborah Cherry’s new book ‘About Mieke Bal’ will be launched.
    Mieke Bal is a leading scholar in art history and visual studies with an international reputation. Recognised as one of the most innovative and distinctive thinkers in critical theory in the English speaking world. Her work is widely read in translation. This collection provides the first sustained scholarly assessment of Bal’s writings in art history, visual studies and critical theory.
    The collection considers Bal’s writings in depth, developing and extending her thinking, and providing enlightening reflection on many of her most important ideas and concepts.
    Contributors include Murat Aydemir, Hanneke Grootenboer, Giovanni Careri, Ernst van Alphen, Griselda Pollock, Sonja Neef, Jill Bennett, and Kaya Silverman, with a conversation between Mieke Bal and Michael Ann Holly, the book is edited by Deborah Cherry.
    The essays consider Bal’s approaches to the art of the past alongside more recent film, photography, graffiti, interactive immersive environments, online performance, and several of her recent films.

    For more information please visit the Blackwell Publishing website.

    Wednesday 22 October, 2008

  • Update

    Meeting Margins

    Meeting Margins – Transnational Art in Europe & Latin America 1950-1978

    Michael Asbury and Isobel Whitelegg of TrAIN have received AHRC funding of approximately £500k to develop a major project of research in collaboration with the Department of Art History and Theory at the University of Essex.

    Meeting Margins proposes a new approach to the study of art from Latin America that questions the role traditionally ascribed to New York as the dominant force in modern art in the post-war years. Focusing on artistic encounters between Europe and Latin America, as well as on intra-Latin American exchanges. It will explore contacts between individual artists and critics, the movements, groups and institutions and wider geopolitical and cultural contexts that supported and provoked them, and the forms of artistic practice that these transnational exchanges generated. The project includes an international graduate research forum at the University of Texas at Austin (2009) and a public conference in the UK (2010). Research from the project will be published as a volume of essays, with contributions from Europe, Latin America and the USA, edited by Michael Asbury (TrAIN) Valerie Fraser (Essex) and Isobel Whitelegg (TrAIN).

    Tuesday 14 October, 2008

  • Announcement

    ‘A Gift to Those who Contemplate the Wonders of Cities and the Marvels of Travelling.’

    Exhibition dates: 3 October - 15 November

    The exhibition ‘A Gift to Those…’ is the result of an exchange of two artists between the UK and Japan, undertaken to celebrate the 150th anniversary of formal links between the two countries. Tokyo-based artist Mio Shirai and London-based Erika Tan each spent the summer of 2008 in the other’s country of residence, undertaking a journey of discovery to unpick what cultural connections exist between Japan and Britain, and what separates them. Shirai was resident with Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art and /sLab at Sunderland University; and Tan was resident with BankART1929 and the Toyko National Graduate School in Yokohama, creating new bodies of work, displayed here.
    Please visit the Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art website for more details

    Monday 06 October, 2008

  • Report

    Two New TrAIN Readers

    In this year’s University of the Arts London promotion round, the TrAIN Research Centre had two successes. TrAIN Senior Research Fellows, Dr Michael Asbury and Dr Yuko Kikuchi, were each promoted to Reader. Last year another core member, Sutapa Biswas, was promoted to Reader, and TrAIN has now three Readers, all promoted while they were at TrAIN. Both Michael and Yuko completed their doctorate at the University (previously the London Institute), became post-doc Research Fellows and now Readers. Congratulations to both Michael and Yuko!

    Tuesday 13 May, 2008

  • Announcement

    Bettina Pousttchi at TrAIN

    Bettina Pousttchi has recently arrived in London as the second Kunstlerhaus Schloss Balmoral Artist-in-Residence at TrAIN. Pousttchi will be in the UK for six months between January and June 2008, where she will research and develop new work, in her studio at ACAVA London and via participation in TrAIN research seminars and events. The German-Iranian artist studied philosophy, art and film theory in Cologne before attending the Kunstakademie Dusseldorf (studying with Gerhard Merz and Rosemarie Trockel) and the Whitney Independent Studio Programme. She lives in Berlin, where her work is represented by the Buchmann Galerie.

    Pousttchi works in large-format photography and video installation. Her most recent series of work is a sequence of twelve photographs collectively titled Parachutes and based on photographs Pousttchi took during a flight practice in Berlin.

    The helicopters, plans and parachutists in these images are only schematically visible, appearing as diminuative flying objects hurled against reworked and overdrawn skyscapes. The series addresses the assertion of state authority over territory, and continues an interest in non-places that is evident in photographic series such as Take Off (2005) and the video installation Landing (2006).

    Wednesday 16 January, 2008

  • Update

    LOCATION: the Museum, the Academy and the Studio

    Deborah Cherry and Sutapa Biswas of TrAIN are convening a panel entitled Monuments and Memorials for LOCATION: the Museum, the Academy and the Studiothe Association of Art Historians Annual Conference, to be held this year at Tate Britain and Tate Modern, London, 2-4 April 2008.

    The booking deadline for conference tickets is 22 February 2008 Please visit the AAH website for details.

    Wednesday 16 January, 2008

  • Announcement

    Would you like to participate in an artistic experience?

    Ricardo Basbaum’s project for documenta 12 has arrived at TrAIN. would you like to participate in an artistic experience? starts with the offering of a painted steel object (125 × 80 × 18 cm) to be taken home by the participant (individual, group or collective) who will have a certain period of time to realize an artistic experience with it. Twenty new objects were produced for documenta. Ten of them circulate in Brazil and Latin America, nine in Europe and one in Africa. One has recently arrived at the TrAIN Research Centre.

    During the time they are in the possession of the object, it is up to the participants to make decisions: what kind of experience will be enacted, where the object will be taken, how it will be useful. The participants send feedback in the form of texts, images, videos or objects, and the documents are displayed in a website developed for the project. Each participant has access to editing tools, which will permit them to upload the documentation themselves. For the duration of documenta 12, results also feed into a sculptural-architectonic installation developed for the exhibition.

    For enquiries about the object currently at TrAIN (and requests from individuals or groups within UAL who are interested in participating) use the Contact area.

    Ricardo Basbaum is in the TrAIN Directory.

    Wednesday 16 January, 2008

  • Update

    TrAIN/Gasworks Residency 2007

    Erika Arzt and Juan Linares completed the first TrAIN/Gasworks Residency in December 2007. One of the aims of this collaboration is to explore the type of practice specific to international residencies, and Arzt and Linares’ work focused this interest in a constructive direction.

    The artists work collaboratively, and are motivated by the question of how it is possible to ‘get in touch, relate to or influence a place or context’. They have answered this question in various ways previously, though site-specific projects carried out within various city-districts including Napoles, Cali; La Bachillera, Seville; Orcasitas (a housing estate on the periphery of Madrid) and Calaf, a small village in Catalonia close to the edges of Barcelona.

    The artists both research and infiltrate available channels – such as community organisations, regeneration schemes and initiatives – and proceed from their own informal interventions. In Calaf, for example, they borrowed the colour schemes and guidelines for the redevelopment of the town centre, and used them to carry out voluntary, unplanned but necessary restoration and repairs in the homes of those living on the margins.

    Rather than working towards a projected outcome, the artists design unpredictable, open-ended systems of working. Their projects develop over different durations and often intermittently, according to the possibilities offered by funding and collaboration.

    The project Tension Orcasitas for example, was initiated in 2006 and is still ongoing. It began with their discovery of a controversial community debate over whether or not to remove a set of potentially hazardous pylons and powerlines in Orcasitas, Madrid. Some citizens demanded that they should be removed completely; others wanted their preservation as a symbolic expression of the identity and history of this peripheral post-war planned neighbourhood. The artists proposed that one line should be dismantled into its component parts, to be reconfigured in any possible way as imagined by the residents. These were interpreted as drawings by the artists, and translated into plans with the help of an architect. Following the injection of further funding, residents will now vote to choose one plan to be realized as a real structure in 2008.

    At Gasworks, the residency project developed both from their observation of the area closest to their studio, and from conversations with Gasworks Education and Outreach Co-ordinator Anna Vass. Over the course of their time spent in London, they developed a relationship with residents of the nearby Kennington Park Estate, both via liaising with community associations and management groups, and via informal encounters with residents and passersby. The artists gathered comments about the use of various communal spaces within the estate, recorded from ad hoc encounters and by using simple devices – such as the Surrealist ‘exquisite corpse’ game – to collectively assemble words and images. This process was then used to produce a script, soundtrack and set for a performance held at the estate’s community centre at the end of the residency.

    While in the UK, Arzt and Linares gained an insight into how inclusive and participatory practice is perceived, and promoted, within the both the spheres of institutional policy, and the field of artistic practice. They contributed to this debate within TrAIN research seminars and with Anna Vass were invited to speak and lead workshops at the 2007 engage international conference. Entitled When Art and Context leads to Meaning the conference was concerned with issues of locality, culture and the context in which art is found, addressing the notion of local and international, as well as asking a question pertinent to the artists’ research interests – what is a ‘meaningful encounter’?.

    Read more about Erika Arzt & Juan Linares in the TrAIN Directory.

    Wednesday 16 January, 2008

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