Deadpan Exchange VII: Preston
Organized by Heidi Hove (DK), Jonn Herschend (US) and Louise Trier (DK)
Hanover Project, University of Central Lancashire, Preston (UK)
Featuring the work of Aistė Valiūtė (LT) & Daumantas Plechavičius (LT), Laura Stasiulyte (LT), Lina Lapelyte (LT), Arunas Gudaitis (LT), Milda Zabarauskaite (LT), Robertas Narkus (LT) and Akvilé Anglickaite (LT)
Curated by Akvilé Anglickaite (LT)
DEADPAN EXCHANGE VII, Preston
Monday 26th November
Heidi Hove + Jonn Herschend: Deadpan Exchange Presentation in Vernon Building VE080
3 – 5.30pm
Included Skype Presentation by curator and artist, Akvilé Anglickaite
Tuesday 27th November:
Heidi Hove: Tutorials 10 – 12.20 am
Jonn Herschend: Tutorials 10 – 12.20 am
Wednesday 28th November:
Louise Trier: Tutorials 10 – 12.20 am
Film Screening in University Cinema 6 – 8 pm
Thursday 29th November:
Private View: 5 – 8pm
Performance by Lina Lapelyte at 6 pm
Live-streaming from Vilnius during the opening
Friday 30th November – Friday 7th December
Monday – Friday
9am – 5pm
The work presented by the eight Lithuanian based artists is the seventh part in a series of international deadpan exchanges, which began in Denmark and Berlin in the summer of 2007. In each of the shows, the artists are actively involved in a give-and-take of deadpan communication… a sort of classic comedy exchange. The work exhibited at the Hanover Project by the seven Lithuanian artists/groups is a reaction to the work of the seven Macedonian based artists, who exhibited at VGAC Gallery in Vilnius (LT) for Deadpan Exchange VI in November 2011.
Deadpan is a form of comic delivery in which humor is presented without a change in emotion or facial expression, usually speaking in a monotonous manner. This puts the burden of interpretation on the viewer. Is the scene comedy or tragedy?
From an art historical standpoint, the shows take their cure from the deadpan strategies employed by artists in the early 1970’s throughout much of the world: Yoko Ono, Martha Rosler, Bas Jan Ader, Vito Acconci, Gordon Matta Clark, Lygia Clark and Hélio Oiticica… to name a few. Their works were a formal rejection of the institutions, the world of “Modern Art,” in favor of a more democratic interaction with the work. In many cases, the work, which often boarded on the absurd or tragic, was delivered with a complete straight face, forcing the viewer to decide how they felt about the work.
The Deadpan Exchange Series is probing this ground in a global way. What happens if you start a joke in one country and respond to it in another? Is there an international deadpan language? Is deadpan universal? From a political standpoint, the organizers are concerned with the way the world is becoming increasingly black and white without any room for something gray and muddled. It is important to offer work that actively challenges the viewer to interpret the work for him or herself. And the Deadpan aesthetic offers a way to both engage and challenge the viewer at the same time. The organizers are also interested in bringing a diverse group of artists together from different places throughout the world and starting a dialogue that might not take place outside of formal institutions.
At the end of Deadpan Exchange VII, seven English artists will create reactions to the works of the seven Lithuanian artists, and these reactions will be exhibited in another country (the location of which is still being determined). There will be 1 more exchange and then a final exhibition in Copenhagen with all the artists’ works in 2014 or 2015.
Deadpan Exchange VII is proudly supported by:
All photographs by Victoria Lucas.