15 November 2009

PARATAXIS

parataxis was an expositional experiment that I made on 22 October 2009. Having been inspired by the work of Anastasia Freygang, especially her new-oma event of 18 June 2008, I have been keen to explore and perhaps gently interrogate the indoctrinated modes of exhibiting art works (and I say 'art' in the broadest sense of the term) for some time. That is to say, I have been thinking a lot about why certain strict decorums of display, ideas of 'medium'-specificity, methods of dealing with documentation and approaches to temporality have been so deeply embedded in our responses and expectations of exhibitions, art works and performances.

It is predominantly from rampant curiosity that I wonder about such things and wanting to explore these thoughts more concretely, I decided to put on a little show. It took a while to get a venue that was prepared to take on something a little unconventional but finally Serial Space in Chippendale, Sydney, gave me a date so I could start moving forward.

The expo ended up including the work of Anastasia Freygang & Eleanor Weber, Ben Carey, Brian Fuata (with Lucas Liccini), Jack Dunbar, Julia Rochford, Laura Hunt, Mary MacDougall, Matte Rochford and Rosita Holmes, with performances by ex_Trendy (Matte Rochford & Robbie Ho), Little a (Amy Wilson) and Pure Evil (Caroline De Dear & Jack Dunbar). I also had a publication printed (by the lovely Blood & Thunder) to an edition of fifty. I want to extend deep thanks to all those involved.

This is how I explained myself on the Serial Space website:

parataxis is an expositional experiment conceived by Eleanor Weber. Including performance, film, music, photographs, paint, paper, glass, text, conversation, uncertainty, warmth and people, parataxis is a one-night-only exploration of the way we exhibit, experience and appropriate art.

According to Jacques Rancière, “the law of the great parataxis, is that there is no longer any measurement, anything in common. It is the common factor of dis-measure or chaos that now gives art its power.” On Thursday 22 October,
parataxis wonders if there can be commonality in the chaos, mutuality in the multiplicity.

Whether linked or not by a common conceptual or material thread, artworks and performances are drawn together by a commonality derived from their mutual exposition. Hence the art event itself becomes a thread; encountered by those in attendance, who are together, present, thus mutually experiencing.


I am indebted to Adeena Mey for making me aware of the name for what was to me a much-loved but nameless grammatical concept: parataxis.

It only lasts one night, but let's hope the conversation lingers ... (to aid the process, I will be posting pictures and words about parataxis artists, artworks and ideas over the next few months.)

Pics Eleanor Weber.

EDIT: For posts on parataxis artists see the links below.
PARATAXIS I twelve (Rosita Holmes)
PARATAXIS I eleven (Pure Evil)
PARATAXIS I ten (Matte Rochford)
PARATAXIS I nine (Mary MacDougall)
PARATAXIS I eight (Little a)
PARATAXIS I seven (Laura Hunt)
PARATAXIS I six (Julia Rochford)
PARATAXIS I five (Jack Dunbar)
PARATAXIS I four (Ex_trendy)
PARATAXIS I three (Brian Fuata)
PARATAXIS I two (Ben Carey)
PARATAXIS I one (Anastasia Freygang & Eleanor Weber)

For parataxis II (London) info click here.
For parataxis III (London) info click here.

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