Produced in conjunction with the 2002 exhibition Newmodulr
Single-sided poster, 97cm x 67cm, off-set printing on uncoated paper
This poster/brochure was developed as an artists’ project by James Carl and Nestor Kruger to accompany the 2002 exhibition Newmodulr, curated by then director/curator Barbara Fischer. The exhibition examined the recent interest in modular structures as emblem of the generic object and/or of architecture. Based in Minimalism, the interests were inflected by disruptions, points of breakdown, or aberrant warpings. The poster was produced in collaboration with the Art Gallery of Calgary, where the exhibition was presented from February to April 2003.
This single-sided poster is printed in black only and features only text and pared-down graphics—as opposed to photographs. A large graphic of a powder bleach container—a cardboard tube with seven dispensing holes in the top—occupies the centre of the poster. To the left of it is an arrangement of small silhouettes of bottles easily recognizable by their shape, such as bottles for liquid laundry detergent, spray-cleaner, bleach, cooking oil, and pump hand cream bottles. On the right side, the poster has a curatorial essay by Barbara Fischer, attending to each of the five artists whose work was included in this exhibition: James Carl, Brian Jungen, Nestor Kruger, An Te Liu, and Damian Moppett.
Cell phones, lunch trays, air conditioners, tracts of suburban housing—the everyday is made up of modular clutter and all the artists in this exhibition make use of it. They do so either directly, or by replicating and representing it. Somewhere between design and architecture, close to both but not collapsing into the functions of either, the artists’ works participate in the visual qualities of the modern movement (its visionary anticipation and elaboration of the grids of modern architecture, the stacks of standardized goods, the beauty of modularity); but they do not share the future-oriented convictions. Earlier, standardized equivalence could stand as a utopian image for social equality. Today, the modular is the very matrix of the material and social worlds, one that continues to replicate and realize itself—with intensifying permutations and variations—throughout all facets of everyday life. The works in this exhibition approach it as an action in process and as effects. They take account of it—highlighting the generic, following up on its wicked speed, its virtual multiplications, and its uncanny, ornamental, and aberrant aggregations.
-Excerpted from the curatorial essay by Barbara Fischer
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