GOSSIP

Exhibition with works by Ana Botezatu, Rindon Johnson, Katarzyna Perlak, Bruno Zhu

26 September – 31 October 2021

Opening 25 Sepetmber 2021

You’re no one until you’re talked about

Hasn’t everybody heard? From hearsay, just between you and me? Gossip is, in principle, nothing more than what everyone talks about but no one can verify. It is what everyone wants to know but no one calls a fact, what everyone passes on but no one has said. Gossip is banal – and had gone viral before going viral was invented. However, it is not something timeless, but a concept with historical and political connotations. The English word gossip originally referred to a close friend. It was only with the advent of modernity that its meaning was changed to specifically denigrate solidarity among women as unserious gossip. This was accompanied by the devaluation of women’s labour, as described by philosopher Silvia Federici. Their labour could be used uncompensated in the emerging capitalism; at home, beyond the sphere marked as public and governed by men.

As mundane and incidental as gossip may seem, it is in reality a powerful force. Unlike information – the official news – gossip does not come into effect as a single message but as a chain of communication. It is ephemeral, networked and never fully tangible. This also makes counterpublics possible, which are used by feminist, queer and marginalised groups in particular as a form of empowerment. But how can this invisible form of action be made visible in an exhibition?

GOSSIP puts the political and poetic potential of trivial moments of contact centre stage. As the finale of the eponymous project cycle, the exhibition brings together artistic perspectives that focus on the subliminal power of gossip, implicitly questioning their own status as exhibition objects. They highlight moments of intimacy, institutionalisation and the embodiment of assumptions that seem to be socially fixed – some of them with direct reference, others as an indirect resonance to a networked world.

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Ana Botezatu works at the intersection between ceramics, drawing, book illustration, set design, puppet theatre and ethnographic research. She studied ceramics at the Art and Design University Cluj-Napoca, and currently lives and works in Berlin. Her work has been shown at STATIONS, Berlin, Galleria Richter, Rome, and Lateral (Fabrica de pensule), Cluj, among others.

Rindon Johnson is an artist. Johnson has presented solo exhibitions at Chisenhale Gallery (London), Julia Stoschek Collection, Düsseldorf and the SculptureCenter (Long Island City). He is the author of Nobody Sleeps Better Than White People (Inpatient, 2016), Meet in the Corner (Publishing-House.Me, 2017), Shade the King (Capricious, 2017) and The Law of Large Numbers: Black Sonic Abyss (Chisenhale, Inpatient, SculptureCenter 2021). He was born on the unceded territories of the Ohlone people.

Katarzyna Perlak works with moving image, performance, sound, textiles and installation. Her films have been shown widely at film festivals across Europe. She has exhibited internationally, including at Remote Intimacies, Leslie – Lohman Museum of Arts, New York & ONE Archives, Los Angeles, (2021), Young Curators New Ideas V, Detroit Art Week, Detroit (2019); and Tighten Throat and Butterflies, Metal, Liverpool Biennial, Liverpool (2018). Perlak was born in Poland, and lives and works in London.

Bruno Zhu lives and works between Amsterdam and Viseu. Recent projects include presentations at Fri Art Kunsthalle in Fribourg, UKS in Oslo, HfKD in Holstebro, Frans Hals Museum in Haarlem, Antenna Space in Shanghai and Kunsthalle Lissabon in Lisbon. Zhu is a member of A Maior, a curatorial program set in a home furnishings and clothing store in Viseu, Portugal.

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With generous support from the Ministry of Education, Science and Culture Schleswig-Holstein and the programme Neustart Kultur of the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media.

Events

2021

10. October 14 h Guided tour of the exhibition GOSSIP with Agnieszka Roguski
25. September 15–19 h GOSSIP exhibition opening