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22 Apr 2011

Argos Centre for Art and Media presents Jordi Colomer and Ria Pacquée

Jordi Colomer, Crier sur les toits, 2011. Courtesy of the artist.




Argos, Centre for Art and Media


Sat 23 April 2011 - 18.00 - 21.00 Art Brussels Late Night Special: Sat 30 April 18:00 - 21:00 in the presence of the artists Exhibitions on view:
26.04.2011 – 18.06.2011


+ 32 (0)2 229 00 03
+ 32 (0)2 223 73 31

Argos, Centre for Art and Media
Werfstraat 13 rue du Chantier
1000 Brussels

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Jordi Colomer
What Will Come

Using fiction as an incitement to participate, the work of Jordi Colomer (1962) suggests that we should invent new ways of inhabiting public space, which recalls situationist thought and works, archittectura radicale and Anarchitecture.
Colomer presents What Will Come, a triptych of films made in America, which echoes his other exhibition in Bozar (29.04 – 12.06.2011) on Charles Fourier and his Phalanstery, a utopian construction invented in the 19th century on the harmony of time, space, work and passion. United by a formal similitude, each film articulates itself around a character who re-enacts his own activity.
The artist took an interest in Co-op City, a 40-tower area built in the seventies in the middle of the Bronx. Today, as shown in the first film, none of its 50,000 inhabitants seems to ride the traffic ways, which are strangely devoted to the routes of delivery men. The second film shows a character on vacation, a distant echo of Menschen am Sonntag (People on Sunday, a docufiction by Siodmak, Ulmer, Wilder and Zinneman from 1929), wandering in Montauk, Long Island. The third is set in Levittown, a typical example of North-American suburbia, a model which has been exported around the world. Colomer establishes another type of narrative, inviting us to conquer space and the imaginary like the pioneers of the new world in those days.
Neutralising the separation between public and exhibition space, 24 anonymous posters at the entrance of the show exhort the audience to 'shout on the rooftops': to proclaim whatever is going on in their heads from the surfaces that cover our towns and are forbidden for public use. The result of a project led with masters students in Métiers et arts at Rennes University, this work shows Colomer's wish to reconsider the role of the spectator, and fiction as a liberating and unifying act. As in architecture, fiction does not have to be produced in ready-to-consume form, but can offer the essential framework of an aesthetic and political life that is yet to come.

What Will Come is produced by CO producciones and co-produced by Argos with the support of AC/E, Institut Ramon Llull and CoNCA. Co-op City is made in collaboration with The Bronx Museum of the Arts; Crier sur les toits is developed within the Master 2 Professionnel 'Métiers et Arts de l'Exposition' program of Université Rennes 2.

In the same period Jordi Colomer shows L'avenir / De Toekomst/ What is to come - 29.04 > 12.06.2011 in Bozar (

Ria Pacquée
Westerly Winds

The work of Ria Pacquée (1954) explores the possible differences, intervals and overlaps between fiction and reality. Her field of study is the street and urban space in the broadest sense. As an observer of public life (which results mainly in photography and video work) and as a participant (performances), she tries to find an answer to the most elementary questions concerning our existence. She is interested in rituals, the delusion and lunacy of religion, anonymity and an almost obsessive wandering, and these are also important bases for the collection of the images and sounds that will ultimately shape her work.
At Argos, Pacquée is showing Westerly Winds, a new arrangement of ten early, recent and new works. Although they go back to 1980, this mosaic of seemingly minor events consists mainly of work from the last five years. In that period, Pacquée zapped eagerly between East and West like a modern nomad. She travelled around in Morocco, India, Tunisia, Yemen and elsewhere, and Belgium and France too. She groups together and edits this worldly material, recorded in the form of photos, slides, notes and videos, shaping them into series based among other things on similarities of form. Although her videos do not have any narrative core or coherent structure, these collected recordings of ephemeral, seemingly banal everyday events are elevated to the level of informal visual-anthropological observations of human behaviour.
Works, such as the series of slides called Resting (2011) and the video Dive into Mankind (2009) do not conceal their content. The images of people resting and bathing originate from different cultural contexts and refer to widely differing situations, while gaining an import that is both prismatic, contemplative and playful. Throughout the exhibition we hear a subtle echo of the artist as an individual, for whom life means experiencing a succession of shared moments. Pacquée guides the viewer on a synergetic circuit and illustrates the fact that ultimately our perception of reality as an all-encompassing image is to some extent always illusory.

Mise en abîme - Dismantling the Economics of Television

In the late Sixties, artists started to work with television recording equipment and broadcasting tools. This wave represented an incredible force for the development of video art as a practice, and for redefining the idea of contemporary art as such.
Television has been seen as a powerful revolution, a possibility of finding a space in the public domain, a more flexible and individual way of treating moving images in relation to classical and experimental cinema, and a new impulse to think about contemporary society.
Soon these perspectives collided with the true nature of the medium: apart from the unequivocal social impact, television embodies the reinforcement of a political and economical hegemony where there is no space for intellectual discourse.
Mise en abîme compiles positions which emerged during the 1970s and 80s, acting against the medium, and its populism. The works deconstruct, in a playful or radical approach, the aura of the television system, undermine the anti-intellectualistic approaches of this public-oriented mass medium, overturn formats and codes, and definitively identify the friction between art and television.
The seminal Television delivers people by Richard Serra subverts the relationship between the consumer and the consumed. Ant Farm's Media Burn integrates performance, spectacle and media critique creating the 'ultimate media event' in order to unmask the logic behind the news media coverage. Furthermore, Test Tube by General Idea emphasizes the power of the media and advertisements in a meditation on changes in the art world, while André S. Labarthe's truthful greeting to Rita Hayworth offers a reflection on cinema and television. Finally, Idéale audience: un paysage télévisuel en France by Joëlle de la Casinière is a montage made up of logos, jingle and TV programme excerpts which analyses the all-embracing presence of television and the sociological implications on the viewers.