The Museum of Contemporary Art, Belgrade (MoCAB) in collaboration with Tate Modern, London, invites you to the opening of the exhibition Turnovers on Thursday 17 July at 7 pm in the Salon of the Museum of Contemporary Art (Pariska 14).
Artists: Ben Cain | Tina Gverović & Siniša Ilić
Curators: Hannah Dewar (Tate Modern) & Una Popović (MSUB)
Confirmed public programme:
Friday 18 July, Salon of the MoCaB, Pariska 14, 6 pm: Presentation on the collaboration between MoCaB and Tate Modern and discussion of the two exhibitions, Inverted House and Turnovers, accompanied by an artist talk. The conversation will be moderated by curators Hannah Dewar and Una Popović and will be in English.
Saturday 19 July, Salon of the MoCaB, Pariska 14, 7 pm: Presentation on Tate Modern’s Project Space programme and recent activity by Hannah Dewar, Assistant Curator. The talk will be in English.
The exhibition Turnovers will be open from 17 July to 28 September and is the second part of a collaboration between Tate Modern, London and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Belgrade. This exhibition is a continuation of the first part of the project – the exhibition Inverted House by Tina Gverović and Siniša Ilić, which was presented in the Project Space at Tate Modern, London between 22 November 2013 and 13 April 2014. As part of this exhibition in Belgrade, the work of British artist Ben Cain will also be presented alongside the artists mentioned above.
The project takes the similarities that exist between both museums – in spite of the clear economic and social differences between the two countries – as a starting point, exploring the role of the museum in today’s society. The building of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Ušće, new Belgrade, has now been closed to the public for seven years for renovation works. As an historic institution and the physical home of an extensive collection, this raises important questions about the exhibition of works and access to public art education, as well as the survival of contemporary art in Serbia today. Tate Modern, on the other hand, is a world renowned institution with around five million visitors each year. An established and widely recognisable brand, the circumstances – both economic and social – in which it operates are very different.
The exhibition Turnovers at the Salon of the Museum of Contemporary Art explores the fundamental components of the museum – the collection, the audience and the building – as a thematic continuation of Inverted House shown at Tate Modern. Alongside elements adapted from the project in London, the exhibition incorporates three new works produced for the occasion: a film, Chameleon, and a sound installation,Houses On The Move, made by Ilić and Gverović in Belgrade during May and June 2014; and Short Falls by Cain, a multimedia work that takes the iconic eight-cubed floor plan of the Museum of Contemporary Art as the basis for a sculpture, a short video and a series of photographs.
The film Chameleon – the first that Ilić and Gverović have produced together – takes Inverted House as a starting point. Different segments of the installation are here adapted and re-used as part of a set in different spaces of the abandoned Museum of Contemporary Art building.Chameleon is a synonym for the constant development of human relations, confined by a space where those relations are reversible and changeable. Through the process of the production of place (in this case, the museum), the film serves as a metaphor for human relations, addressing the real needs of individuals and their realities. It emphasises the process of the construction of a space which is still unfinished; a space which is caught between being disrupted and regulated, and that is slowly growing into something and starting to make sense.
Referring directly to the Museum of Contemporary Art’s historic building, Cain’s Short Falls questions the associations that the familiar form of the museum floor plan evokes in us. In the gallery, the sculpture is accompanied by a series of black and white photographs depicting the material placed in different positions within the museum building, as well as a film that records a man standing on the same piece of fabric, only to have it constantly pulled out from under his feet. As an artist less familiar with Belgrade’s context, Cain offers an ‘outsider’s’ view, commenting lucidly on its advantages and shortcomings.
Turnovers at the Salon of the Museum of Contemporary Art explores the notion of the museum as a space for thought: a space that is being constructed and in which you build and form process. By connecting local experiences and activities and reconsidering global happenings and their consequences, the artists subtly presented the problems of belonging, dislocation and instability in the framework of a broader socio-political context. This, perhaps more than ever before, defines the position of art today and is responsible for the particularities and characteristics of each art institution’s activities.
This collaboration between the Museum of Contemporary Art and Tate Modern is part of the Project Space series, begun in 2011, which is dedicated to presenting contemporary art through peer-to-peer collaborations with cultural organisations from around the world. It aims to explore the most challenging art of today as well as the complexities of operating within a global context for contemporary art.
For more information about the first project, Inverted House at Tate Modern, please visit the Museum of Contemporary Art’s website (http://www.msub.org.rs/izvrnuta-kuca) or the dedicated project page (http://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-modern/exhibition/project-space-inverted-house).
Dragana Kostica is the Belgrade-based editor in chief and founder of Still in Belgrade art, culture and club scene magazine. She holds a Master of Arts in Cultural Policy and Management in Arts (MA of Arts) and a Bachelor degree in Archaeology.