Art Monthly 420: October 2018

Art Monthly cover Art Monthly back cover
Mika Rottenberg

Interviewed by Tim Dixon


Bob Dickinson

Midnight at the Museum

Andrew Hunt

On Cripping

Sara Jaspan

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Mika Rottenberg NoNoseKnows 2015
on show at Goldsmiths CCA, London



Mika Rottenberg interviewed by Tim Dixon

The Argentina-born, New York-based artist discusses artists as irritants, women’s hidden labour, and the difference between art and activism.

That is the difference between being an artist and being a social activist, where your role is to make a specific change. Art has more layers, because it is also about your place within it and how you play to these systems. It’s a bit of an experiment in the end.
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Ragnar Kjartansson The Visitors 2012



Bob Dickinson finds it telling that artists are searching for new ways to express sincerity

In an era of fake news and famous fibs, the work of artists ranging from Anne Imhof and Isaac Julien to Brian Griffiths, Andy Holden and Ragnar Kjartansson all seem to raise the question: can sincerity be achieved without irony?

Sincerity is offered in lieu of authority. All of these works are a bringing together of personnel, offering impermanent and incomplete provisional space and time to balance (rather than directly challenge) dominant cultural forms and tools with something personal, shareable, intended and meant.
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Mark Manders Dry Clay Head 2015


Midnight at the Museum

Museums and curators are facing a crisis of identity and purpose argues Andrew Hunt

In the light of the current slew of new publications and conferences on museum discourse, is it time to ask what will the future be like after the new institutionalism?

If digital documentation in museums now has a much wider audience than exhibitions, and communication and connectivity are enforced (museums are now places that don’t leave us alone), museums enact a constant form of unethical participatory theatre, in which visitors are unwitting collaborators in the spectacle.



Education, Education, Education

The Americanisation of British politics following Tony Blair’s quasi presidential reign is perhaps no surprise, given the connections between the UK’s political elite and US universities. But after all that education, couldn’t they figure out that US-style higher-education fees are regressive, both socially and economically?

Surprise, surprise – it turns out that it would have been cheaper, more efficient, as well as more democratic to have left the grants system in place all along.



Bangladeshi photographer Shahidul Alam, who has shown at Tate Modern and the Whitechapel Gallery, has been arrested and tortured in Bangladesh for ‘tarnishing the image of the state’; Pussy Riot activist Pyotr Verzilov has been admitted into intensive care suffering symptoms that resemble nerve-agent poisoning; Weisbaden Biennale has had its controversial statue of Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan removed by authorities; Belgian artist Jan Fabre has been accused of sexual harassment; the number of pupils taking art GCSEs continues to drop; the opening of Goldsmiths CCA is picketed by Justice for Cleaners protesters; Dutch activists celebrate the end of Shell’s sponsorship of the Van Gogh Museum; plus the latest news on galleries, appointments, prizes and more.

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Roman Signer Round Room 2018
on show at Kestnergesellschaft in Hannover


Tai Shani: Semiramis

Ellen Mara De Wachter

Lindsay Seers: Every Thought There Ever Was

Jamie Sutcliffe

Mark Wallinger: The Human Figure in Space

Paul Carey-Kent

Time After Time

John Parton

Ways of Learning

Tom Emery

Surrey Unearthed

Neil Zakiewicz

Maggie Lee: Music Videos

Maria Walsh

Ana Vaz: The Voyage Out

Andrew Hibbard

Hannover round-up

Paul Carey-Kent



Chad Elias: Posthumous Images – Contemporary Art and Memory Politics in Post-Civil War Lebanon

Tom Snow

Another insightful aspect of Chad Elias’s analysis is the attention paid to nuanced social politics engendered in postwar civil space.

Inventory: The Counsel of Spent

Daniel Neofetou

Throughout The Counsel of Spent, the ‘dissident subjectivity’ the authors hope to cultivate is often characterised exclusively in terms of its opposition to the ruling class, rather than the autonomous logic of capital to which this class marches in lockstep.


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Leonhard Fink My map of Austria 2010

Letter from Vienna


Saim Demircan

The reason I was cycling through Klosterneuberg on that particular day was because I was en route to Museum Gugging, which houses the collection of Leo Navratil (1921-2006), a celebrated psychiatrist and author of Schizophrenia and Art.


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Gelitin Vorm-Fellows-Attitude 2018

Letter from Rotterdam

The Dutch Brooklyn?

Amy Budd

I comment on how I find the work to be aggressively macho and masculine, which he seemed insulted by. ‘Well,’ he said, ‘we don’t have access to menstruation.’


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research image for Tom Nicholson’s Stranger at Fountain 2018
photo depicts the Gwangju Uprising of 18-27 May 1980

Letter from Korea

One Step at a Time

Chris McCormack

It is perhaps a curious inversion that Seoul-based chief curator, Sunjung Kim, invites us to ‘imagine’ borders when the hardest of hard borders – the mile-wide Demilitarised Zone (DMZ) no-man’s-land which separates the southern Republic of Korea from the northern Democratic People’s Republic of Korea – is so physically present.



On Cripping

Sara Jaspan

Cripness is far from an issue confined to the art world, and the wider social invisibility and political silencing effect of chronic illness was discussed by all four speakers.


Ways of Working


Henry Lydiate

From earliest times to the present, artists have developed ways of controlling the extent of their output, often out of necessity, partly as a creative decision, and sometimes with a weather-eye on their potential sales market.




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