STATE OF PLAY
3 February – 28 March 2004
Open 10am – 6pm daily. Admission free.
Sponsored by HUGO BOSS
State of Play presents the work of international artists who play with ideas, materials and situations. At a time when art can no longer be defined through a single dominant movement or school of thought, the exhibition identifies a number of artists who share an attitude of irreverence and wit, and a lightness of touch increasingly visible in contemporary art making today.
The artists included typify this attitude in a number of different ways. Their work ranges from the humorous to the ironic, from the poetic to the absurd, and from the light-hearted to the dark. Working in a variety of media, they create imagery and scenarios that have in common a sense of informality and an air of spontaneity.
Whether they embrace an economy of means and use everyday or discarded materials, play off the architecture of the gallery or devise situations that are deliberately self-mocking, they create playful and provocative statements about contemporary art and the world at large.
All of the works included in State of Play were selected in close collaboration with the artists and many were created especially for this exhibition. State of Play is curated by the Serpentine's Chief Curator, Rochelle Steiner.
Artists in the exhibition include Italian-born artist-provocateur Maurizio Cattelan, much of whose work functions as spectacle, challenging the conventions of the art institution; British Turner Prize winner Martin Creed, whose self-effacing approach results in deceptively simple yet highly subversive works of art; and New York artist Tony Feher who, with common materials such as coloured tape, string and filled or partially filled water bottles, creates restrained yet playful interventions inside and outside the gallery space.
The mundane and often absurd scenarios in the videos of German-born Christian Jankowski are infused with a sense of irony and deliberate self-mocking. Mexican artist Gabriel Kuri brings out the poetic potential in everyday objects and materials to reflect on consumer behaviour and the function of art within capitalist society.
artist Bjørn Melhus samples popular culture sources including daytime
elements of performance art, poetry, music and sculpture, the video
Also supported by the Italian Cultural Institute and the Goethe-Institut.
Boss’ partnership with the art world began over eight years ago.
They have organised numerous notable exhibitions worldwide and in conjunction
with the Guggenheim Foundation, established the Hugo Boss Prize, which
has evolved into an internationally renowned contemporary art award. Both
Maurizio Cattelan and Pipilotti Rist, whose work is included in State
of Play, have in the past been short-listed for the Prize.