Ten Contemporary Artists Collectively Formulate Exhibition of New Work

Ten Contemporary Artists Invited By The Guggenheim To Collectively Formulate An Exhibition of Individual Site-Specific Installations of New, Self-Reflexive Work For The Frank Lloyd Wright Rotunda


Artists Include: Angela Bulloch, Maurizio Cattelan, Liam Gillick, Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster, Douglas Gordon, Carsten Höller, Pierre Huyghe, Jorge Pardo, Philippe Parreno, and Rirkrit Tiravanija


Exhibition: theanyspacewhatever
Venue: Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, 1071 Fifth Avenue, New York City
Dates: October 24, 2008 - January, 2009
Media Preview: Thursday, October 23, 2008, 10 am – 12 pm


(NEW YORK, NY – March 14, 2008)  During the 1990s a number of artists claimed the exhibition as their medium. Working independently or in various collaborative constellations, they eschewed the individual object in favor of the exhibition environment as a dynamic arena, ever expanding its physical and temporal parameters. For these artists, an exhibition can comprise a film, a novel, a shared meal, a social space, a performance, or a journey. Using the museum as a springboard for work that reaches beyond the visual arts, their work often commingles with other disciplines such as architecture, design, and theater, engaging directly with the vicissitudes of everyday life to offer subtle moments of transformation. 

What is most striking about this loose affiliation of artists, each of whom emerged during the early 1990s and now boasts strong, independent careers, is that they periodically and randomly join forces to create a variety of projects ranging from co-directing films, to purchasing the copyright for a Japanese Manga character and franchising her image, to initiating a land reclamation project in rural Thailand. The Guggenheim Museum has extended an invitation to a core group of ten artists—Angela Bulloch, Maurizio Cattelan, Liam Gillick, Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster, Douglas Gordon, Carsten Höller, Pierre Huyghe, Jorge Pardo, Philippe Parreno, and Rirkrit Tiravanija—to collectively formulate a scenario for an exhibition, one that will reflect and articulate the unique nature of their practice. Organized by the museum’s Chief Curator, Nancy Spector, in close collaboration with the artists, the exhibition will seek to present a genealogy of their shared history through a site-specific installation of new, often self-reflexive work created on the occasion of this project.

Support for theanyspacewhatever is provided in part by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Etant donnés: The French-American Fund for Contemporary Art, and the Grand Marnier Foundation.

The planning process began in the fall of 2004 and through a series of regular, open-ended discussions, the conceptual structure of the exhibition was determined. Instead of producing one, jointly created meta-project for the show, the artists have chosen to each produce an individual, site-specific work or selection of works for the museum’s Frank Lloyd Wright rotunda. In many cases, their projects are retrospective in nature, capturing their own individual histories and reflecting on their past collaborations with various members of the group, while leaving open the possibility of realizing new ones during the run of the show.  The exhibition will exist in both space and time; many of the works on view will reveal themselves sequentially and others will change throughout the duration of the project. Performances and film programs will form an integral part of the installation.


The Exhibition’s Title
Suggested by Liam Gillick, the term “any-space-whatever” is used by French philosopher Gilles Deleuze to describe a cinematic trope of essential heterogeneity—a “singular space” in the film defined by multiple perspectives in which linkages among constituent parts may be made in an infinite number of ways. Therefore, the “any-space-whatever” is a filmic realm that represents a “locus of the possible.”  In its application as an exhibition title, the term suggests the idea of a coherent space comprising multiple and shifting views that nevertheless coalesce to invoke the idea of pure potentiality.


The Installation
theanyspacewhatever will be the first large-scale exhibition in the United States to examine the dynamic interchange among this core group of artists, a many-sided conversation that helped shape the cultural landscape of the past two decades. The artists will each contribute an individual project creating simultaneous, coexisting layers that will intersect and overlap in the museum’s spiraling rotunda.  The following is a partial list of projected works, which may expand, evolve or change during the ongoing preparations for the exhibition:

Angela Bulloch will transform the museum’s ceiling into a “night sky” surface studded with LED constellations. This canopy would be suspended beneath the rotunda’s skylight, enveloping the space in a perpetual nighttime.

Liam Gillick plans to intervene in the museum’s signage and visitor service systems, including ticketing, directions, didactics, and seating, subtly re-orientating visitors’ experience of the space and the exhibition itself. 

Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster will exhibit Promenade (2007), a seven-channel sound installation will “tropicalize” one of the ramps of the rotunda.  In collaboration with Ari Benjamin Meyers, she will also present a live orchestral performance in the museum’s Peter B. Lewis Theater, on an ongoing basis during the run of the exhibition.  This project is an elaboration of the work she presented in Il Tempo del Postino, an experimental, time-based “group show” organized by Philippe Parreno and Hans Ulrich Obrist for the Manchester opera house, as part of the Manchester International Festival in July of 2007.

Douglas Gordon will exhibit a number of his most important video, photographic, and text pieces in reverse, in a stylized “rewind” of his career. For example, 24 Hour Psycho, (1993) – a frame-by-frame elongation of Alfred Hitchcock’s 1960 masterpiece – will be shown backwards, in 24 hour sequences for which the museum will remain open to the public.

Carsten Höller is creating an operative, full-service hotel room in  the rotunda, which would periodically host guests overnight at the museum. The Revolving Hotel Room consists of 3 superimposed turning glass discs mounted onto a forth one which also turns at very slow speed. One disc has a king size double bed, one is for working and make-up purposes, and one has a wardrobe/minibar. The guests will have access to exhibition when no other visitors are present, in addition to the unique experience of sleeping within the museum. The room will be on view during museum hours.
Jorge Pardo will present silk-screened prints created by the other artists participating in the show, which will be produced by a press he is launching in his studio in collaboration with master printer Christian Zickler. 

Philippe Parreno plans to invite a comedian to perform a monologue in the Guggenheim’s rotunda that will describe a number of Parreno’s unrealized projects. The museum will be periodically open to the public at night during the run of the show. An old-fashioned movie marquee will be installed outside the museum to announce and reflect this nocturnal activity during the day. 

Rirkrit Tiravanija is creating a documentary film that will provide a perspective on the 1990s by interviewing the circle of friends and artists he was associated with throughout the decade. Entitled Talk. Talk., this feature-length film will comprise in-depth interviews with artists such as Elizabeth Peyton, Matthew Barney, Gabriel Orozco, Sarah Lucas, Pipilotti Rist, Janine Antoni, Olafur Eliasson, and Andrea Zittel, among others, as well as with each of the artists in the exhibition. Videos from the project will be shown on monitors on the ramps of the rotunda, with the capacity for the viewer to select which segment to watch. An edited version of the film will be screened in the Peter B. Lewis Theater.

Additional programming: In a joint program with the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Guggenheim will present a series of screenings that will showcase the work of Anna Sanders Films, a production company based in Paris, founded in 1997 by Pierre Huyghe, Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster, Charles de Meaux, and Philippe Parreno.

The Wrong Gallery, an ongoing curatorial project by Maurizio Cattelan, Massimiliano Gioni, and Ali Subotnick, will participate in theanyspacewhatever exhibition.  The gallery, which initially operated in a tiny exhibition space behind a glass door in Chelsea and has since maintained an itinerant presence in institutions such as Tate Modern and the Whitney Museum of American Art, will introduce another selection of artists to the project in a format yet to be determined.


The exhibition will be accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue featuring over 30 texts by scholars, critics, and curators, most of whom have shared in the artists’ individual and collective histories. The catalogue will include an introductory overview by Nancy Spector, essays devoted to the individual practice of each artist, and a series of concise texts focusing on pivotal group shows, organizations and collaborative projects.  These multiple points of view will elucidate the group’s fluid social, intellectual and creative exchange, coalescing into the most comprehensive examination to date of its critical cultural impact.  Topics in this section include: No Man’s Time (Villa Arson, Nice, 1991), M/M (founded 1992), Backstage (Kunstverein in Hamburg, 1993), Hiver de l’amour (Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, 1994), Lost Paradise (Kunstraum Wien, 1994), Moral Maze (Le Consortium, Dijon, 1995), Mobile TV (Le Consortium, Dijon, 1995-98), Association des temps libérés (1995-), Permanent Food (1995-), Vicinato (1995) and Vicinato 2 (1999), Traffic (CAPC, Musée d’Art Contemporain de Bordeaux, 1996), Moment Ginza (Le Magasin, Centre National d’Art Contemporain, Grenoble, 1997), Anna Sanders Films (1997-), The Land (1998-), 6th Biennial of the Caribbean (1999), No Ghost Just a Shell (1999-2003), What If (Moderna Museet, Stockholm, 2000), The Wrong Gallery (2002-), Utopia Station (2003-), All Hawaii Entrées / Lunar Reggae (Irish Museum of Modern Art, 2006-07), and Il Tempo del Postino (2007). 

The distinguished roster of catalogue authors includes Michael Archer, Jan Avgikos, Daniel Birnbaum, Ina Blom, Stefano Boeri, Francesco Bonami, Nicolas Bourriaud, Xavier Douroux, Patricia Falguières, Hal Foster, Massimiliano Gioni, Michael Govan, Dorothea von Hantelmann, Jens Hoffmann, Chrissie Iles, Branden Joseph, Emily King, Tom Morton, Molly Nesbit, Hans Ulrich Obrist, Beatrix Ruf, Stephan Schmidt-Wulffen, Barbara Steiner, Rachael Thomas, Eric Troncy, Giorgio Verzotti, and Olivier Zahm.


A full schedule of educational programs will be presented under the auspices of the Sackler Center for Arts Education during the run of the exhibition. For further information, call Box Office at 212 423 3587 or visit www.guggenheim.org/education.


Admission and Museum Hours: $18 adults, $15 students/seniors (65+), children under 12 free. Admission includes audioguide. Saturday to Wednesday, 10 AM to 5:45 PM; Friday, 10 AM to 7:45 PM. Closed Thursday. On Friday evenings, beginning at 5:45 PM, the museum hosts Pay What You Wish. For general information call, 212 423 3500, or visit www.guggenheim.org.


March 14, 2008

Betsy Ennis, Director, Media and Public Relations
Claire Laporte, Associate, Media Relations
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
212 423 3840
E-mail: publicaffairs@guggenheim.org


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