SPECTACULAIRE is a culmination of a two-month process of reflection upon notions of “staging” and “performing” with the intention to create ‘an experienced moment’. It is a display of works that are mainly in-situ productions, in that they are resulting from an intense art making process within a context of a residency.
In this context these in-situ productions relate to an experienced moment that is also referred to as “a spectacular moment”. It is understood that these works reference a past experience, yet at the same time function as an announcement of an anticipated experience, that may or may not come. The intention of this exhibition is to therefore critique and subvert what constitutes “spectacular” experiences, in what essentially becomes residue of the residency – what is left behind and has passed – yet at the same time act as an ongoing experience and the potential to become a reliveable experience.
Whilst artworks on this show explore various different themes, there is a common thread, which has to do with the examination of political histories, architecture, land and nature, and the story-telling of the future. The exhibition is thus not about fixing one particular historical narrative that which is only concerned with a French or a South African history, but rather about creating a fictionalised context where these histories meet and can be reimagined. Overall, the encompassing concept does not simply become “an acting out” of particular tasks or identities. It is concerned with the reframing of “staging” or “performing” as processes that potentially open up tensions between non-existence and hypervisibility. It thus proposes an experience that is obtainable, yet at the same time ungraspable. It is a non-political exhibition that is about political imaginations that get translated into different contexts.
Process and methodology are important aspects of the show as this speaks back to the notion of exchange. It is about how the residency provides a context and an environment where different histories can be explored and as a result exchanges happen. This environment also allows for a space where artists can experiment and reflect in order to expand on their practices.
The exhibition presents the spectator with contained moments of time travel; a mixing of ideas and translation of experiences. It becomes a space where histories and present moments potentially coexist. From journeys into futures, to trading in the intangible and the negotiation of public space, this exhibition will encapsulate moments that speak to notions of time, space, experience, and beyond.
With DONNA KUKAMA, PAMELA PHATSIMO SUNSTRUM, THENJIWE NKOSI, MADEYOULOOK
Curator: Nontobeko Ntombela