Friday, August 25, 2006

We All Laughed at Christopher Columbus

Roderick Buchanan
Jeremiah Day
Omer Fast
Runo Lagomarsino
Deimantas Narkevicius
Amalia Pica
Florian Wüst

Curated by Krist Gruijthuijsen and November Paynter

Text by November Paynter

September 14 – October 21, 2006

Much artistic and curatorial practice today aims at exploring the truthfulness of historical representation, or the problematic dialectic between collective memory and factual source. Of late, there has been a great deal of attention on artistic practices that focus on reconstructions of historical events - from reenactments to documentary videos, the aim is often to question, investigate or reconsider social attitudes of interpretation. Opposed to these tendencies the exhibition We all laughed at Christopher Columbus deals primarily with subjective, artistic interpretations of specific historical events.

The significance of the events explored is already determined in collective, internationally distributed history, and although the subjects are not related, or consequentially linked in history in any acknowledged way, they do suggest points of allusion by way of similar artistic approaches and attitudes. This is most evident in the way the selected artists embrace the fictive within incident, without being compromised by feelings of responsibility to accuracy, thus leaving space for the audience to interpret their own response to each work and construe hypothetical, historical associations.

We all laughed at Christopher Columbus is a project organised in three parts. The title of the show is taken from a work by Runo Lagomarsino featured in the first version of the exhibition at the Stedelijk Museum Bureau Amsterdam between 22 July and 3 September 2006. The presentation in Istanbul includes the participation of two additional artists Omer Fast and Deimantas Narkevicius, a new work by Lagomarsino, as well as adapted installations by Florian Wüst and Jermiah Day. Thu, where the first exhibition offered a buoyant, more light-hearted approach to the title and concept of the project, the second exhibition in Istanbul will possess a more melancholy attitude and approach. The third part in the series will be a publication, which will bring together texts and thoughts that have influenced and been discussed in relation to the two exhibitions.

A performance by participating artist Jeremiah Day will take place on the opening night (14th September) at 10.30pm.

We all laughed at Christopher Columbus at the Stedelijk Museum Bureau Amsterdam: Roderick Buchanan, Jeremiah Day, Runo Lagomarsino, Ola Pehrson, Amalia Pica, Florian Wüst. Screening of November by Hito Steyerl.

This project was realized with financial support of the Mondriaan Foundation, Amsterdam.