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Saturday, 27 July 2013

confession #000075

... or, i am not a souvenir (but you will remember me)

this year is going to be my year of big emotions, artistically speaking.  starting the year with an andy warhol retrospective, whimsically flying off to london for the roy lichtenstein retrospective and now yesterday coming face to face with a banksy here in krakow.  i think there is only so much more my heart can take.  (oh, yes, there is keith haring at the musee d'art moderne in paris, but i'm afraid i have to give that a miss.)

yesterday afternoon we headed off to the museum of contemporary art krakow - mocak - where we visited the economics in art exhibition.  by way of reviewing this exhibition, i'll start off with what happened afterwards: the walk back to the tram stop and all the ride from mocak back to the old town was a feverish discussion of what constitutes art, whether one has to understand what the work / the artist is trying to say, the different types of artists and how they operate and who is the true artist ... that, for me, was sign enough that this exhibition achieved its purpose.

let me go back to the start now - even before the exhibition itself.  mocak has been organising themed exhibitions curated in a way which relate art to subjects which are present in our daily lives.  two previous installments of this series treated history in art and sports in art.  i was a bit miffed for missing the history in art one, but was adamant i would visit economics in art - especially when i saw that a banksy piece would be among the exhibits.
kunst = kapital by joseph beuys
di-faced tenner by banksy
the exhibition itself included well known names in the contemporary art world such as beuys, blume, castro, cano and of course banksy as i already mentioned.  by far my personal favourites in the collection were (sorry banksy!) dan perjovschi's chalking times and jota castro's works with rolled up one dollar bills.

chalking times can't be missed.  a huge wall serves as a blackboard for the artist's musings.  these are random scribbles, which are rendered cohesive through their social comment on how art is treated by today's society and how some artists are more interested in the size of their biennale installation than its message, or by the ownership of a 'big house, big car, slim wife'.  one of the most poignant messages by perjovschi said "the whole game is how not to end up on coffee cups, i-phone covers, napkins or as education department subject." art for art's sake and not for its commercial potential.

excerpts from chalking times by dan perjoivschi
castro's work was equally provoking. rolled up dollar bills became a hangman's noose in mortgage, a comment on how credit culture is the root of all problems; the crown of thorns is replaced by a crown of dollar bills in habemus papam, reflecting the irony of the roman catholic church in its riches and financial scandals.

mortgage (top) and habemus papam (bottom) by jota castro
other works which certainly caught my attention were olga kisseleva's video projection which showed the sudden and ever increasing takeover of multinationals in russia; another video installation of a staged auction of artworks, focussing more on how easily it is to hang the piece on the wall and how beautifully framed the work is (artist escapes my memory); and klaus staeck's coca-cola poster showing christ's crucifixion presented by the ubiquitous drink company.

from the series 'why rent when you can buy' by jose maria cano
just a word or two about my outfit of the day.  as pretentious as i am, i wanted to go for a classic bohemian look - not the hippy kind of bohemian but the black turtle neck, black capris and flats look which was the uniform of artists and artists-in-waiting in the 60s.  being the middle of summer, with temperatures soaring even here in krakow, i opted for a mod look dress from pop boutique at asos which i paired with my pointy black flats from yoshe.  i stupidly wore tights in this heat but i felt the look was more complete like that.  keeping to the monochromatic look, i wore my parfois embroidered cross-body bag in black and white.  if you like the look, please give it a hype on the lookbook button below x

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