Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard
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Jerwood Space, London. May - July 2006

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Walking After Acconci (production still)
Installation view of Walking After Acconci at Apexart in New York

Curated by Cristiana Perrella neo-con exhibits the work of six contemporary artists re-making (with a twist) famous conceptual artworks. The exhibition began in New York at Apexart and toured to The British School in Rome. Download the PDF exhibition guide for neo-con at Apexart

The other artists in the exhibition are:

Jonathan Monk, Yoshua Okon, João Onofre, Mario Garcia Torres and Francesco Vezzoli.

Neo-con exhibition guide

For neo-con, Iain and Jane are exhibiting Walking After Acconci (Redirected Approaches) and Walk With Nauman.

Artworks that reference other artworks as their main subject matter run the risk of being little more than esoteric in-jokes for those who know their art history. Whilst the pieces displayed in this show are on one level exactly that, they are also far from being just a dry homage or conceptual one-liner. Re-enacting (with a twist) famous conceptual works, the artists in neo-con level and humanise, by quirky humour and down-to-earth sensibility, the key principles of Conceptualism like the favouring of ideas over object-making, the dematerialisation of the art object, the production of work in collaboration and often without a studio. Far from the low resolution, degraded black and white images associated with the art from Sixties-Seventies, they infuse the sophisticated and cryptic aesthetics of Conceptual Art with mass culture. Beneath this playful, ironic take on art making, however, is a serious scrutiny of the very idea of art, its status, appearance and market value, as well as the myth of the artistic genius.

Although being based on appropriation, a constant in postmodern aesthetics, the power of the works exhibited is experiential as well as referential. They are a combination of reconstruction and revision, a double-take, a superimposition paralleling two eras, two forms of cultural expression and two dialogues; the dialogue with the reference work and the dialogue with the present. By creating warps in time, they intend to promote connectivity instead of competitive dialectics of history.

Iain Forsyth & Jane Pollard, London. July 2005 [photo: Jet]
Walking After Acconci (Redirected Approaches) [production still]

Walking After Acconci (Re-directed Approaches) references a seminal video work made in 1973 by performance artist Vito Acconci. In it, Acconci paces the length of a corridor, talking to an absent ex-lover. Forsyth and Pollard have worked closely with Plan B (679 Recordings), a sharp-tongued young MC, to update the script and re-shoot the video, liberally adopting the style and aesthetic of contemporary urban music videos. Click here to watch a short excerpt of Walking After Acconci

Iain Forsyth & Jane Pollard, London. July 2005 [photo: Jet]
Walk With Nauman [production still]

Walk With Nauman references Bruce Nauman's Walk with Contrapposto (1968). It is a video re-working of the original, casting a professional dancer in place of Nauman. The dancer moves up and down a reconstruction of Nauman's Performance Corridor emphasizing contrapposto posture throughout her routine. Click here to watch a 30 second excerpt of Walk with Nauman

Private view at Apexart, New York


Contemporary Returns to Conceptual Art
291 Church Street
New York, NY 10013
Tel 212.431.5270

6 Sept - 14 Oct 2006

Touring to:
British School in Rome
via Gramsci, 61
00197 Roma
Tel +39 06 326 4939

10 Oct - Nov 2006



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Work in this show
Walking After Acconci (Redirected Approaches)
Walk with Nauman (Re-Performance Corridor)

Click to watch

Click to watch

Related press
'Walking After Acconci' Marie-Anne McQuay, 2005
'Iain Forsyth & Jane Pollard' - Untitled. 2005
'Lover's View' - The Big Issue, 2005

Related shows
Kate MacGarry
Surfing the Surface
Jerwood Space
Street: behind the cliche

Related sites
British School in Rome


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