Back in June, Andrew Berardini chided Doug Aitken for his "theatrical posturing" about the porous nature of geo-political boundaries. Aitken, the darling of bienales and billionaires alike, used a large-budget commission to stage a film-driven "happening" aboard Dakis Jannou's yacht. Berardini's description of Aitken's theatrical installation has to be read to be believed, but, most notably, the artist seems to have missed the irony of his own work. Riding the the flow of art-collecting capital as it sloshes around the globe, Aitken can easily sing the praises of "international permeability." But, as Berardini points out, this is a permeability made possible mostly for the bored rich.
I'm consider myself a fan of Aitken's work, and I'm sure he produced a visually compelling piece of work. His films are generally aesthetically flawless, and often unsettling in their depiction of slightly surreal places. But there are more interesting, relevant, and (perhaps) truthful things to be said about borders and the conditions of bordering, and other people are saying them.
project that erected a temporary crossing point between the U.S.A. and Mexico. There was Emily Jacir's work Where We Come From, where she repeatedly crossed the Palestinian border to fulfill the requests of Palestinian exiles. There is Clemens von Wdemeyer's short film Otjezd [Leaving], which creates an imaginary consulate scene, eerily mimicking the disorienting experiences of navigating different cultures and their bureaucracies (still above). These works go a long way towards confronting conditions of bordering that shape the lives of the not-so-wealthy billions, and I'm betting that they make for more engaging art as well.
Quick study: Bushwick, Venice, Hong Kong
18 minutes ago