WORKSHOP 2019 MILAN
Pirelli HangarBicocca, 26-27-28 marzo
Richard Birkett, chief curator at the ICA – Institute of Contemporary Arts, London
Marie de Brugerolle, curator, art historian and lecturer at the l’ENSBA – Ecole nationale supérieure des beaux-arts de Lyon
Cally Spooner, artist
Performance is the title of the workshop Q-Rated Milano 2019 held at the Pirelli HangarBicocca to address in depth certain aspects of the international debate on performance visual art developed in the last decade. Discussions on its links with performing arts such as dance and drama, and reference to the organization of work imposed by post-Taylorist capitalism, with its constant demand for the highest levels of performance, have not prevented the discipline from gaining increased popularity among artists and institutions of contemporary art. The latter have indeed begun to equip themselves with ad hoc facilities and specialized curators in order to add performance to their exhibition programmes, thus helping to foster a new period of experimentation and prompting critical reappraisal.
Drawing on the experience of three leading figures, namely the curator and art historian Marie de Brugerolle, lecturer at the ENSBA Lyon, the artist Cally Spooner, and Richard Birkett, chief curator at the ICA in London, the workshop offers young Italian artists and curators the opportunity to discuss the question from three different standpoints. De Brugerolle has developed a series of projects over the last few years based on the concept of “post-performance” she first put forward in 2011. Spooner belongs to a generation of artists led by performance to rethink the exhibition format through spatial action and the use of different media. Birkett is helping with his work at the ICA to reposition performance within the programmes of an institution that is an international point of reference in the debate on contemporary art.
In the spectacular setting of such a major, avant-garde structure as the Pirelli HangarBicocca, Q-Rated Milano 2019 pays tribute to a city that is one of the primary driving forces of the production and circulation of art in Italy.
Richard Birkett (born Wolverhampton, UK, 1976) is Chief Curator at the Institute of Contemporary Arts, London, and has previously held the role of curator at Yale Union, Portland (2016-2017); Artists Space, New York (2010-2016) and the Institute of Contemporary Arts, London (2007-2010). He is a serving board member of the artist advocacy organisation Working Artists and the Greater Economy. His work as a curator has spanned exhibitions and structures for event-based programmes, emphasising art production as in conversation with other disciplines and modes of organising. While at Artists Space, he co-founded Artists Space Books & Talks, a space for talks, discussions, screenings, performances and meetings. His recent projects include exhibitions by Forensic Architecture, Metahaven, Morag Keil & Georgie Nettell and Cameron Rowland, and the research project and exhibition The Combative Phase.
Marie de Brugerolle is an art historian, curator and author. Her work focuses on the history of performance art, from the 1960s to its current state of dematerialisation and absorption by the society of the spectacle. This focus complements her on-going theoretical project, Post Performance Future. She is the leading authority on the French-born Californian artist Guy de Cointet and has been instrumental in introducing Californian conceptual art to European art viewers (first retropsectives of Allen Ruppersberg, 1996, Guy de Cointet, 2004, John Baldessari 2005, Larry Bell, 2010). Brugerolle has worked extensively on the question of re-enactment and recreation in performance art, including re-staging the final work of Cointet, Five Sisters (1982), at LACMA, LA and MoMA, New York (2012) and Bride Groom at the Musée M, Leuwen, Belgium in 2017. She often collaborates with other curators and artists on exhibitions. Recent collaborations include I was a Male Yvonne de Carlo (2011) at MUSAC, Léon, Spain, an exhibition on political satire she organized with the artist Dora Garcia, as well as the exhibition ALL THAT FALLS (2014) at the Palais de Tokyo, Paris, which she co-curated with the writer/psychoanalyst Gerard Wajcman. Other recent curatorial projects include: SPACEY FOREVER, Los Angeles (a mini series), LA EXISTANCIAL at LACE, Los Angeles (2013), RIDEAUX/blinds at IAC Villeurbanne, Lyon (2015), and SALON DISCRET, an evening of performances at Centre Pompidou, Paris (2017). Amongst recent publications, the first monograph about Guy de Cointet, The Artist as Cryptographer (2010, rééd. 2016, JRP Ringier-Presses du Réel). Post Performance Future: an experimental umbrella, to be published in 2019 by Shelter Press. Contributes to magazines such as Artforum (USA) Mousse (Milan), HUM (New Zealand).
Cally Spooner (born London, UK, 1983) is an artist based in Athens. Recent solo shows include SWEAT SHAME ETC., at Swiss Institute, New York (2018), Everything Might Spill at Castello di Rivoli, Turin (2018); DRAG DRAG SOLO at the Centre d’Art Contemporain Genève, Geneva (2018); Soundtrack for a Troubled Time and Notes on Humiliation at Whitechapel Gallery, London (2017); And You Were Wonderful, on Stage at Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam (2016); On False Tears and Outsourcing at The New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York (2016) and Vleeshal, Netherlands (2015). Spooner’s work was included in recent group exhibitions at NTU Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore, Singapore (2018); V-A-C Foundation, Moscow (2018); FRONT International: Cleveland Triennial for Contemporary Art, Cleveland (2018); The Serpentine Galleries, London (2017); Kunsthaus Zürich, Zürich (2017); Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh (2016); Aspen Art Museum, Aspen (2015); and REDCAT Gallery, Los Angeles (2015); among others. She has also curated several exhibitions and events, including Micro-Composition at San Serriffe, Amsterdam (2017); A Social Body Event at The Serpentine Galleries and Central Saint Martins, London (2017); and An Intimate Symposium on Maintenance, Whitechapel Gallery, London (2017) and Violent Incident, at Vleeshal, Netherlands (2018).Publications written by Spooner include Scripts, published by Slimvolume Press (2016) and Collapsing in Parts, published by Mousse (2013). A monograph of her work published by Museo MADRE, Naples and Vleeshal, Netherlands is forthcoming in 2019. Spooner will open a solo exhibition at the Art Institute of Chicago in 2019.