Chapter two :
Misfortunes of the turbo-tasking
MAY.07. – JUL.16.2022
With works by Liam Gillick, Joséphine Kaeppelin & Vincent Knopper.
The Balcony is glad to introduce their inaugural cycle of events titled The Promise of Ruin(s). The program, set to unfold throughout the coming year tackles the concept of ruin(s)—both as a material relic and as an intangible construction of the mind—giving space to overlapping proposals and temporalities.
The second chapter looks at how artistic labour fits within the realm of the economic functioning of society in which case the multiplicity of identities is a strategy for artistic freedom, opportunities and sometimes economical self-defence. The overlaps between leisure and labour are topics that run through our program and this exhibition in particular.
Misfortunes of the Turbo-tasking looks at how artistic ‘labour’ fits within the realm of the economical functioning of society.
Both Joséphine and Vincent alternately describe themselves as makers, builders, renovators, service providers, designers, [...] ultimately as artists. This peculiar twist helps to acknowledge the variety of skills involved in ones practice: technical as well as organizational, craftmanship and entrepreneurial spirit. The multiplicity of identities is a strategy for artistic freedom, opportunities and sometimes economical self-defence. The intersection between these works shines upon the commodification of the living, the nurturing of automatisation and the necessity for observation. The overlaps between disincarnated office work, technical knowledge and artistic labour are topics that run through our program and this exhibition in particular.
Why is produced what is producedBY Liam Gillick
The work by Liam Gillick, as a sticker, already embodies the potential of a subversive action in urban space. Sticker-bombing as an act of opposition to the establishment, in between juvenile vandalism and a more conscious political critique. Then, an apparently simple question such as that of its title, effectively summarises the research at the core of Joséphine and Vincent’s practices, in which production becomes a way to establish power relations, social order and control, that the artists intend to hijack.
Gillick’s work ranges from small books to large-scale architectural collaborations. His practice exists in a constant tension between his formally minimalistic works and his critical approach through writing and the use of text, questioning the role that art may play in society.
PATRONS & Microsoft Word drawingsBY Joséphine Kaeppelin
PATRONS is an artist edition consisting of 13 work clothing which patterns are designed from documents that the artist consulted at the National Archives of the World of Work in 2019 in Roubaix (FR). Inventories of factory equipment, meetings report, books of demands, letters, handwritten notes, corporate magazines, positions’ descriptions, surveys, brochures and communication campaigns. During her investigation in the archive center, joséphine collected the ways of saying what one does, paying particular attention to the words of women.
The A3 drawings are made with Microsoft Word. Joséphine hijacks the initial function of the software. No files are kept. She works with the characteristics of the word processing tool : combining signs, tables, graphical elements, and choosing precisely the print settings. Each drawing results in several prints as several drawing gestures. By drawing this way, she acts within and against a standardized system that is this software.
Joséphine Kaeppelin is an artist and intellectual and graphic service provider - a status she self-assigned in 2017. This figure of provider allows her to go on the field and act in certain contexts (company or institution). She carries out missions whose main objective is to heckle the minds. During these missions, she collects ways of saying, gestures, signs and words composing the raw material of the objects she creates in response to a situation. She lives and works in Heerlen (NL).
One-Pot-SystemBY Vincent Knopper
Vincent Knopper presents two new sculptures under the umbrella-title 'One-Pot-System'. The title originates from a lacquer-type which is invented by commercially-driven crafts. In Dutch the lacquer is also known as 'doorwerklak', which literally translates into 'keep-on-working-lacquer'. These types of commercialised and standardised materials and their turbo-qualities become methodologies for Knopper to make his works. In the two sculptures in the exhibition Knopper combines these materials and techniques until they become counter-efficient, in order to question their effectiveness. For example, in one of the works Knopper approaches drying times of different lacquers as a timeframe for the production of the sculpture.
Vincent Knopper is a visual artist and he lives and works in Amsterdam. He describes himself as an arthandler, artist, carpenter, designer, furniture maker, handy-man, painter, renovator, sculptor, woodworker. Through these descriptions he aims to articulate the similar yet distinctive faces of making, use of materials, references and labour that represent the core of his practice.
The artist fees are supported by the Mondriaan Fonds via the Kunstenaarshonorarorium scheme subsidy granted in accordance to the fair practice guidelines. The Gemeente Den Haag supports The Balcony’s production between January and July 2022.
The Promise of Ruin(s) is curated by Arthur Cordier & Valentino Russo.