“We are now witnessing a moment of collapse and general disruption. In spite of first impressions, the social body —as an entity that inhabits the physical space in the city and the virtual space in the globalized cyberworld— is facing its own disintegration. The decline of representative democracy gives rise to a lifestyle based on constant acceleration. It is not surprising that the resistance to this process largely coincides with the idea of reassessing where the individual stands in regard to that which is known as the commons.
Subtle mass-media tyranny replaces the reflexive element, thus feeding into our automatized behavior. Analytical and critical thinking are the only means of transcending the staged act, the cosmetics which edify our globalized world. Only an understanding of its ruling codes may allow a reaction, which must also manage to insert itself in its own terms. Reacting to dissuasion and fear, which underlie the bombast of the individualist performance promoted by the public virtual sphere, demands a power of suggestion capable of an authentic and surreptitious social incidence.
In the face of an excess of manipulated information, the correct use of language as the signifier of the world and as a structure of communication becomes an exercise in ethics, one which points at what is lost, or sees clearly through the noise, in our current state of reorganization.
In his interpretation of the relativization of humanity, Enrique Baeza reports the current assault on reality with extraordinary wit. Pertinent and precise, this young artist, a veteran of communication, resorts to the performative nature of language in its seminal state. Brief one-liners somewhere in between poetry, ad slogans and propagandistic statements confront us with the phatic power of their own written gesture, teasing us with irony, pushing us deep into our own emotional, painful relationship with the truth.
A new pace naturally comes with a new language, and with it, new imageries. Our systematic acceleration demands a different holistic pulse, a different vibe, and the emancipation of consciousness as the manager of our inner revolution. Beyond the cognitive or intellectual factor, Baeza’s keen use of paradoxes and transliteration stands as a most opportune moral behavior in which language re-emerges as a cosmogony of affection. Baeza’s sacred and profane textual shamanism contains no moral, but rather conspiracy and riddle.
Minutely conceived, his sentences have been skillfully materialized in a sort of ubiquitous ‘subvertising’ dialectic. In the streets of New York City, Baeza’s advertising boards display black text, ended efficiently with a full stop, on white backgrounds. In private spaces, small-scale neon signs give up the grandiloquence of its normal usage to appeal to proximity.
Heir to a tradition including Brossa, Holzer, Baldessari, Kosuth, Wiener or Ruscha, Baeza’s work claims words as the meeting point between the individual’s intimate relationship with language and interpersonal communication. Rifts. Fractures in the drama of our inner landscape to activate the psychological and spiritual ecology of our social body, whose thought, as Baeza knows well, rather than numb, is hypnotized.”
by Nathan Coley
Built as a municipal bathhouse in the late 19th century, Les Bains-Douches would eventually become one of the hottest night clubs in Paris known simply as Les Bains, a destination for the likes of Kate Moss, Mick Jagger, Johnny Depp and even Andy Warhol. Due to some faulty construction in 2010 the building was declared a safety hazard and is now slated for complete renovation in just a few days to pave way for La Société des Bains, a new space that will open in 2014. In the meantime, owner Jean-Pierre Marois turned over the building to 50 street artists commissioned by Magda Danysz Gallery who have been working since January to turn the decaying building into an endless canvas of artwork.
While the entire space will unfortunately remain closed to the public, photographers Stephane Bisseuil and Jérôme Coton were allowed in to shoot many of the artworks in progress. Above is just a small selection, head over to Les Bains “One Day One Artist” page to see much more.
From the 1st of March Malaysian artist Hong Yi started playing with her food – each day she creates a beautiful piece of art in her plate made entirely out of food. The artist that also goes by the name “Red” is going to create 31 pieces by month’s end. Known as the artist who ‘loves to paint, but not with a paintbrush’, her works have been featured by media around the world including Huffington Post, Wall Street Journal, ABC, CNN and the Daily Mail.
© Hong Yi
For ten months artist Mikko Kuorinki formed one new text on the wall of Kiasma museum every week, using text passage of different authors such as Mitch Hedberg, Elias Canetti or Joe Brainard.
Los Angeles-based artist Pae White merges art, design, craft and architecture through site specific installations and individual works which defy our expectations of a variety of techniques and media. For her South London Gallery exhibition she creates a mesmerising installation in which vast quantities of coloured yarn span and criss-cross the room to create supergraphics spelling out words that can only be deciphered by navigating the space. Inspired by a period of insomnia and consequent reflection on the transience of our existence, the letters and words emerge and dissolve depending on both our physical relationship to them and the relative weight of the overall aesthetic experience.