WAR OF CURRENTS _eliminator of possibilities
'WAR OF CURRENTS _eliminator of possibilities' was part of the group show the UNFAIR project at the Service garage in Amsterdam. Artist and curator Ehsan Fardjadniya invited me for this show that was organized parralel to Art Amsterdam (art fair) and part of temporary museum Amsterdam. The art works in this show formed an institutional critique towards the commercializing tendencies in the so called 'art world'.
'War of Currents' responded to the way art is valued in an isolated white cube setting. At the Service garage, which was located in a former garage for Citroën cars, I collected all available materials that refered to this past. By placing these materials back between the created white walls of the exhibition space I did not only aimed to disturb the clean experience of art but also wanted to raise awareness over this manipulative act of isolating objects this way.
'War of Currents' was inspired by the surrounding street names of the Service garage. Referring to scientists and inventors, like 'Stephensonstraat' (George Stephenson), 'George Westinghousestraat' and 'Rudolf Dieselstraat'. The famous confrontation between George Westinghouse's promotion of AC power distribution and Thomas Edison's DC power system became known as "The War of Currents."
This difference in approach and conflict between these scientists was used here as a metaphor. Realizing that my ideas about the role and function of art is conflicting the general ideas of what art should be. A protest towards Art with a capital A as the object of desire presented in art fairs. The art market's force to see art as product of possesion takes 'the present' as 'eliminator of possibilities' and transfers the future into the past. What I am looking for is a change in currents towards a form of art that can contribute to society and functions in the everyday live of people like you and me.
Article published in online magazine Tubelight: UNFAIR project Amsterdam, installation War of currents June 2009
Article published at #strangemessenger: I love Unfair and follow the money
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Best regards, Edwin Stolk.