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Father, Can’t You See I’m Burning? at de Stedelijk Museum

Stedelijk Museumplein 10, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Stedelijk Performance
de Appel Curatorial Programme: Father, Can’t You See I’m Burning?
June 8, 2014
12 – 6 p.m., different locations in the museum
4 p.m., press conference

Language: English Entrance: Entrance price to the museum + 2,50

In collaboration with the Stedelijk Museum, the participants of the Curatorial Programme of de Appel arts centre (an annual education program for young curators) present a special performance. The program encompasses a press conference in the form of a simultaneous poem, a lingering smell in the Stedelijk, and a choreographed dissemination of specially written texts throughout the museum.

This event is part of the public program of Father, Can’t You See I’m Burning?, which is an exhibition curated by the participants of the Curatorial Programme at de Appel arts centre in Amsterdam, on show until June 15. Conjured from the ashes of a radical inheritance, this project loosely reconsiders an important non-event: an exhibition that never happened, namely, that of the Situationist International’s proposal to director Willem Sandberg to build a labyrinth in the Stedelijk Museum, in 1959. When Sandberg asked the artists to collaborate with the fire brigade due to the risk that their proposal involved, they immediately withdrew their proposal. Their idea, as well as the performance program of this afternoon, questions the extent to which institutions that present art, determine the conditions of (contemporary) art practice.

The program at de Stedelijk Museum:

Smell installation
Smell is an olfactory installation by Janek Simon in collaboration with Laurent-David Garnier. For the duration of the day, a smell will fill one of the spaces in the museum and reference the Situationists' exhibition proposal of 1959. The work Smell was realized for the first time at Kronika in Bytom, Poland, in 2006. It belongs to a group of artworks in which the artist touches upon the problem of catastrophe – a possible end of civilization.

Press conference at the Cinema Room
The simultaneous poem by artist Dina Danish will be relayed by the six curators of the Curatorial Programme as a press conference. If this simultaneous poem were to take place it would be executed by Kurt Schwitters, Charlie Chaplin, I.K. Bonset, the ridiculously good-looking Lettrist International and Everybody Else.

Dissemination of texts
In addition to the works by Janek Simon and Dina Danish, newly commissioned texts by writers and theorists will be disseminated throughout the museum, where the visitor will coincidentally encounter them en route. These texts are responses to the six curators’ preoccupancy with questions related to the aforementioned unrealized Situationist’s proposal to the Stedelijk Museum. Writers include: Sophia Al Maria, Sebastian Cichocki, Chris Fitzpatrick, Yazan Khalili, Vincenzo Latronico, Vesna Madzoski, Mardi, Aaron Schuster, Eloise Sweetman, Jan Verwoert, and Arnisa Zeqo.

Background information:

Father, Can’t You See I’m Burning? is curated by the participants of the Curatorial Programme 2013-2014: Renata Cervetto, Kris Dittel, Lara Khaldi, Emma Panza, Aneta Rostkowska, and Kate Strain.

Every year the participants of the Curatorial Programme at de Appel arts centre organise an event in collaboration with the Stedelijk Museum that takes different forms corresponding to their final project.

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il 8 June 2014



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