GLUMBA SKZX – Ex Elettrofonica
Tomorrow, Tuesday the 13th, the Ex Elettrofonica gallery space will present the exhibition GLUMBA SKZX, curated by Ben Crothers (Belfast, 1987) chosen as the first installment of the BE MY GUEST series conceived by Manuela Pacella.
The idea of BE MY GUEST is basically to invite a curator to conceive an exhibition for the space of Ex Elettrofonica. The difference compared to the exhibitions usually made for this space is the difficulty of building a strong group show that manages to highlight both the works of artists selected within the space as well as the thinking that led the curator in conceiving and setting up.
We want to give special importance to the role of the curator as a scholar whose research and skills can be seen especially in group shows, when these are not simply a “formal” combination of artworks made by different artists but when the choice goes to compose a unified speech and an experiential path.
It is therefore an invitation from a curator to a colleague, noticed for his particular innovative qualities, for his professionalism and the conviction of his ideas.
Seemingly insignificant objects, concepts and situations are challenged and disrupted in GLUMBA SKZX, through which the chance encounter is celebrated and the purposeless, banal and irrelevant are re-presented in highly imaginative ways.
The exhibiting artists reinterpret and re-evaluate pre-existing material and explore elements of everyday life which may often be overlooked: reimagining water as a luxurious, decadent beauty product (AdhamFaramawy, 1981, Dubai); purposefully enacting a series of common mistakes (Michael Hanna, 1979, Craigavon); video-recording a small wooden crate’s journey through the postal delivery system (ShiroMasuyama, 1971, Tokyo); writing and illustrating a comics series based on a teenager’s diary found in a gas-station bathroom (Esther Pearl Watson, 1973, Frankfurt); expensively documenting items of low value (Theo Simpson, London); creating sculptures from childhood toys and household objects (Ben Craig, 1985, Belfast); inventing a fictional gang based on an encounter on the New York subway (Fiona Larkin, 1976, Dublin); photographing a fleeting moment in which the aesthetic cross-associations between a dog and a plastic garden chair became apparent (Locky Morris, 1960, Derry); and drawing inspiration from a children’s book to create an adult-themed comic strip about a witch, her cat, and an anthropomorphic owl (Simon Hanselmann, 1981, Launceston, Tasmania).
GLUMBA SKZX embraces humour and the absurd in a multi-sensory environment in which photography, video and sculpture are exhibited alongside comic books, toys and second-hand clothing, which demand our attention and consideration just as much as the more readily acceptable forms of contemporary art on display. Audiences are urged to reconsider that which would not ordinarily be exhibited in a contemporary art gallery, faced with misspelt tattoos, playful canines, plastic banana holders and a drug-addicted witch. Like the exhibition title itself, meaning often lies where one may not expect, taking us by surprise, making us smile, and changing our perspective.
Ex Elettrofonica – vicolo Sant’Onofrio 10-11, Rome
Opening Tuesday 13 January 2015 – 7 March 2015