Artist: Ahmet Öğüt, Goshka Macuga
Venue: Witte de With, Rotterdam
Date: June 17 – December 31, 2017
Full gallery of images, press release and link available after the jump.
Images courtesy of Witte de With, Rotterdam. Photos by Kristien Daem, Fred Ernst.
The exhibition is the result of Witte de With Director Defne Ayas’s pairing of two of the most important critically engaged artists of our times; Goshka Macuga and Ahmet Öğüt. Both artists’ interests are tied to political and historical contexts, distilled through a variety of media and strategies of representation that include performance, participatory event, sculpture, film, and installation. This process has led to realizations of parallel frames of reference, such as an engagement with the work of thinkers such as Albert Einstein, Karl Marx, activist Angela Davis, and hacktivist Aaron Swartz.
The culmination of a lengthy period of exchange between Macuga and Öğüt, the exhibition departs from both artists’ generous and playful examination of each other’s practices. Executed in two episodes – the first steered by Ahmet Öğüt (17 June – 20 August), and the second by Goshka Macuga (8 September – 31 December) – the project lays bare the pair’s attempt to formulate a methodology with which to survey their respective practices, and reflections on both of their investment in what should be the basic currency in the art world today: trust and peer-to-peer artist dialogue.
Artists are often committed to reconciling the world in critical and imaginative ways and to offering new readings. What is the possible role of an artist in contemporary practice in relation to another? Given the radical potentiality offered by the two artists’ engaging in activism through the practice of instituting, as exemplified in their recent work, the project stands to ignite such processes further, hopefully initiating fruitful future collaboration.
About Ahmet Öğüt
Ahmet Öğüt lives and works in Amsterdam, and Berlin. He often collaborates with individuals whose expertise lies outside the field of art, as well as other artists, to construct situations that bring about shifts in perspective on social and political issues. He is the initiator of the Silent University (2012-ongoing), an autonomous knowledge exchange platform by refugees, asylum seekers and migrants. He was enrolled in the Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten / Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture & Science in Amsterdam (2007-2008). Among his recent and upcoming exhibitions are a solo show in Kunsthal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen (2017); Round-the-clock, ALT Bomonti, Istanbul (2016); and Studio Öğüt, Galerie Wedding, Berlin (2016). In 2016, he has participated in the 11th Gwangju Biennale and the British Art Show 8, Edinburgh, Norwich.
About Goshka Macuga
Goshka Macuga is a London-based artist. She studied at Central Saint Martins School of Art, and at Goldsmiths College, London. Her practice typically applies in-depth historical and archival research to an interest in the evolving relationships among artists, institutions, politics, and communities. Her works investigate how art can be used to voice current concerns, rouse public debate, and inspire social change. Throughout her career, Macuga’s work has embraced diverse mediums including sculpture, installation, architecture, and design. Among recent group- and solo shows are: Goshka Macuga: Time as Fabric, New Museum, New York (2016); To the Son of Man Who Ate the Scroll, Fondazione Prada, Milan (2016); The Artist’s Museum, ICA Boston (2016); and Accrochage, curated by Caroline Bourgeois, Punta della Dogana, Venice (2016). In 2008 she was among the four nominees for the British Turner Prize.