“And So On And So Forth” International Group Show kim? Contemporary Art Centre, Riga October 5 – November 18, 2012
Do you know who Robert Filliou was? A French Fluxus artist with an education in economics who, over his lifetime, managed to call at least seven different countries home, including Egypt, Korea, Denmark and the US. Filliou went to his “eternal home” in 1987, while staying at a Buddhist monastery, but the fruits of his imagination have been a powerful influence up to the present day. A testament to this is the group exhibition And So On And So Forth, showing in Riga's kim? Contemporary Art Centre, October 5 through November 18, and organized by the Estonian curator Margit Säde Lehni and the Center for Contemporary Arts, Estonia.
The conceptual base for the exhibition borrows from Robert Filliou's equivalency principle, which he presented in 1968 at Paris's Centre Pompidou by lining up on the wall a series of wooden boxes with little red socks. Each box was a unit with which to measure the value of a piece of art, based upon an economic law that Filliou had come up with himself. Namely, Filliou proclaimed “well done”, “badly done” and “not done” works of art as fundamentally equivalent. Following this scheme, Filliou labeled several art works with the stage at which he had chosen to leave the work. For instance, the 1972 Joseph Beuys portrait was marked as “not done”, because it was simply a blank canvas with the German artist's name on it. In much the same way, the exhibition And So On And So Forth is an attempt to create a temporary territory in which works of art are permitted to be unfinished, changing and growing over time – in essence, to be verbs instead of nouns.
The organizers of the exhibition have given brief overviews of some of the works, and they sound quite intriguing. For example, the American artist David Horvitz makes regular trips to the beaches of the Baltic Sea, where he follows the sun and paints the sky on envelopes. (By the way, kim? is holding an informal “meet and greet” with the curator Margit Säde Lehni and the artists on Sunday, October 7, at 12:00 PM; afterward, those interested can go on a walk with David Horvitz and take part in a sky painting workshop.) It's also been revealed that the French artist Julien Prévieux constantly keeps writing non-motivational letters – in response to help-wanted ads listed in newspapers; and that the Danish artist Ursula Nistrup is still searching for a song that she once heard playing on the radio.
And So On And So Forth is about the poetic and witty, rather than the usual process of art leading to a finished end product. The exhibition will present almost twenty artists, hailing from practically all of the world's continents.
The opening of the exhibition is scheduled for Friday, October 5, at 7:00 PM, with Krõõt Juurak's performance of “Scripted Smalltalk and So On, So Forth” – at which time the works on exhibit will become stage props, and the viewers – the actors. Organizers promise that “on the imagined stage, the press release will come apart from its banality, and the exhibition will loose its concept.”
Participating artists: Ivars Gravlejs (LV), David Horvitz (US), Takahiro Iwasaki (JP), Krõõt Juurak (NL/EE), San Keller (CH), Paul Kuimet (EE) & Mikko Rikala (FI), Camille Laurelli (FR), Ursula Nistrup (DK), Olof Olsson (DK), Pind (DK), Julien Prévieux (FR), Annika Ström (SE / UK), The Collection of Marianne and Fritz Keller (CH), Triin Tamm (EE), and Toomas Thetloff (EE).
For information on other events in October and November that pertain to the exhibition, see www.kim.lv.