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NEW-MEDIA-CURATING  September 2007

NEW-MEDIA-CURATING September 2007

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Subject:

Re: Sept/Oct 07 Theme: Curating new media design: interaction and architectures

From:

Sarah Cook <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Sarah Cook <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Fri, 21 Sep 2007 09:31:02 +0100

Content-Type:

text/plain

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Message forwarded from Verina Gfader:

Begin forwarded message:

> Hello everyone
>
> Just briefly to introduce myself: I am an artist and researcher,  
> working on curatorial projects mainly in the fine art/media area  
> and have recently joined the CRUMB team!
> Working on the current discussion list theme and catching up with a  
> few recent shows and installations, I have not yet seen the Cyborg  
> show Sarah was commenting on in her last post.
> Having been around London I made a visit though to this year’s  
> Serpentine gallery pavilion, a helix-shaped piece of art/ 
> architecture designed by artist Olafur Eliasson and Norwegian  
> architect Kjetil Thorsen (http://www.serpentinegallery.org/2007/01/ 
> serpentine_gallery_pavilion_20_7.html
> ). So while Sarah focuses on questions around exhibition design, I  
> would like to raise a few issues about art/architecture/design in  
> public spaces and – dealing in some ways with spatial practice both  
> on part of the artist/architect as well as on part of the audience  
> – thinking about the idea of an “active building/installation”.
>
> If design/architecture is the work itself, in what way does it  
> shape the experience of the audience? How is (inter)action by the  
> viewer INVITED by design, and – in this case – by architectural  
> devices? Can this piece of art/architecture be seen as an “object”  
> or “process” - based?
>
> While approaching the pavilion on my way from South Kensington  
> towards the Serpentine gallery, a link I immediately made was to  
> the Monument to the Third International, envisioned by Russian  
> artist and architect Vladimir Tatlin around 1917 (http:// 
> en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tatlin's_Tower). As a  helix-shaped  
> construction the Tower was imagined to function as a media centre  
> if you like, including spaces for conferences, lectures, and an  
> information centre issuing manifestos via telegraph, radio and  
> loudspeaker. Mechanical devices were designed to enable the visitor  
> to be transported around.
>
> Entering the Serpentine pavilion via the beginning of the helix- 
> shaped ramp, a guide about the project is handed over to you.  
> Leading up to the major turn a central space opens up with a café  
> and seats, surrounding an empty place in the centre, where the  
> floor’s design is also that of a helix. Further up the spiral – and  
> almost reaching the top – a door opens up towards the inside of the  
> building from which you can take a look either down to the café or  
> up the sky: the very top of the pavilion is a round glass revealing  
> a fragment of the outside, clouds, blue sky....
> While wandering up and down, and glimpsing through openings and  
> architectural cuts, it seems that this building not only produces a  
> spatial experience based on an in- and out-ward movement and  
> inconsistent openings, but also that the viewing is predicated on  
> constantly communicating with an other visitor, so that the dynamic  
> of the shape becomes also a dynamic inherent in perceptual  
> registers. As an artwork, or designed object if you like, this  
> could perhaps be seen as a piece that acts upon us in that our  
> encounter lacks a resistance to the movement we perform.
>
> Has anyone on the list already experienced the pavilion? Any  
> comments on the building as design, architecture, public  
> intervention? As a kind of hybrid between construction and  
> temporary artwork, how can its discursive site be described?  
> Curating a work like the pavilion, what does intervening in  
> “public” space mean: for the audience, the gallery hosting it, the  
> artist/architect/designer?
>
> More thoughts would also be around: “alternative architecture”,  
> such as Nils Norman’s constructions…
> Or when the work is integrated in already existing buildings (e.g.  
> Daniel Buren’s work), or when a public, communal and discursive  
> site is enacted in projects such as Under Scan by  artist Rafael  
> Lozano-Hemmer http://www.lozano-hemmer.com/eproyecto.html
>
>
> Best
> verina

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