This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.
15 MARCH – 5 MAY
The First Antechamber, 2007 (installation view), with Gabriel Lester, All Wrong (2005), and Alexandre Singh, A Thousand and One Knights of the
Roundtable of Knottingham, 2005. Photo: Nina Canell. Courtesy Project Arts Centre, Dublin
It’s neat in the context of The First Antechamber that the text that her ongoing photographic research into the spaces of leisure and
paces out the show’s territory was apparently discovered by curator pleasure, in the form of a slide projection accompanied by a spoken
Tessa Giblin after she had decided on the exhibition. It makes text, heard beneath an audio umbrella (Installation for Dolores,
uncanny sense because the show brings together three artists who 2006). The text maintains a glancing, bumpy relationship to the chic
work corrosively on traditional narrative fl ow, hacking the usual retro fi ttings featured in the images. “It’s more about the immediate
directions of time and satisfaction until, at the end of each piece, the look of the surfaces than the chipboard beneath,” the female voice
chances are that you’ll fi nd yourself not only back at the beginning declares, but is also, it seems, about the way a patina of nostalgic
but also equipped with a new sense of dissatisfaction. narrative can form over the crisp forms of Modernism.
The text in question, written by Maria Fusco (who also A number of web-search engines receive thanks at the end
supplies a library of books to the exhibition), addresses the buried of Dutch artist Gabriel Lester’s smeary, artefacted video projection,
links between narrative fi ction and art criticism: in both, the context All Wrong (2005). In the sequence, an almost endless procession
encourages us to give the benefi t of the doubt, to assume a unity of blown-up web video clips attempts to illustrate a headphone
and engage with the gaps, omissions and ruptures the work throws narrative about a Forrest Gump-ish male who fi nds himself slipping
up. The three European artists represented here seem to emphasise, ef_f ortlessly and continuously from one improbable scenario to the
pillory even, this atavistic compulsion to close the circuit. next. The ef_f ect is like clicking your way through a couple of hours
French-born, Brooklyn-based Alexandre Singh dominates on YouTube waiting to see what happens in the end.
the room visually with his installation A Thousand and One Knights There is an unsettling and exhilarated quality about the
of the Roundtable of Knottingham (2005). His bricolage of found interchangeability of the links in these three artists’ chains of meaning.
objects – lights, planks, jars, hi-fi equipment, DIY cast-of_f s – infl ects But the experience here is not necessarily powerful enough to make
the meaning of the piece’s audio and video elements, which it you forget that some narratives work better than others, and that
houses. The audio features a twisty narrative, full of Borgesian but not all their satisfactions are trite, nor all their progresses pointless.
non-sequitous incident, read by a voice with the bent phonemes of a Yet the ef_f ort here is, perhaps, to imagine beyond a command-and-
computer-speech application. As it plays, a TV monitor positioned control structure in meaning, allowing tales to tell themselves or,
on a nearby plank strobes through a gamut of electric colour. as likely as not, refuse to. Anything could happen now; everything
British artist Charlotte Moth provides further relics from already has. Luke Clancy
p147-161 Reviews AR Jun07.indd 12 3/5/07 16:23:15
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