Museum Show Arnolfini
16 Narrow Quay, Bristol, BS1 4QA, U.K
www.arnolfini.org.uk Museum Show: Part 1
24 September–19 November 2011
One of the most curious tendencies in modern and contemporary art has been that of museums created by artists. Museum Show is a historical survey exhibition—or a ‘museum of museums’ perhaps—displaying a comprehensive selection of these highly idiosyncratic, semi-fictional institutions. Presented at Arnolfini in two chapters, it will be the first exhibition to chart this particular tendency in contemporary art.
Museum Show presents museums by approximately 40 artists from across the spectrum of career status, from canonical to emerging, and from around the globe. The exhibition will look at the different interpretations of what a museum can be, whilst charting the methodologies and reasons used by artists for creating their own institutions—ranging historically from critique directed towards institutions of art, to more contemporary examples that focus their attention towards wider social and political realms of cultural hegemony.
The exhibition includes museums that employ a classic ‘museological’ approach, including Marcel Broodthaers’ seminal Musée d’Art Moderne, Départment des Aigles and the absurdity of Bill Burns’ Museum of Safety Gear for Small Animals, through to broader, more conceptual understandings of a museum infrastructure, such as Tom Marioni’s Museum of Conceptual Art—a functioning bar and an early example of ‘convivial’ artwork in the US, to the abjection of Museum of Ordure, or the utopia of Museo Aero Solar—a floating museum made of thousands of recycled carrier bags.
The opening of Museum Show Part 1 also marks the landmark occasion of Arnolfini’s 50th anniversary. For this year-long anniversary programme, Arnolfini has worked with the research theme of The Apparatus, reflecting on the conditions of the art system today. The Apparatus is about the ‘makings of’ artists, of artworks, of institutions, and of a cultural infrastructure.
Museum Show: Part 2
Selected 50th Anniversary Events:
Cerith Wyn Evans: Paysage Fautif (Wayward Landscape)
The Museum of Ordure
Neil Cummings Book Launch and Exhibition Tour of his residency project Self Portrait: Arnolfini
Seth Siegelaub in conversation with Teresa Gleadowe