Artes Mundi 6: Sharon Lockhart and Karen Mirza and Brad Butler
Sharon Lockhart works with individuals and groups to make still and moving images that are both visually compelling and socially engaged. One of Lockhart’s major works is Lunch Break (2008) which features 42 shipyard workers as they take their midday break. Over the course of the lunch break we see workers engaged in a wide range of activities — reading, sleeping, and talking — in addition to actually eating their midday meal. For Artes Mundi 6, Lockhart shows one of two films from Lunch Break entitled Exit. Filmed over a five-day working week, each of the five takes that comprise Exit shows the long progression of workers leaving the Bath Iron Works at the end of their shift. Reminiscent of Louis Lumiere’s film, Leaving the Lumiere Factory, Exit emphasises the flow of time and the nuances of daily experience.
Karen Mirza and Brad Butler
Gallery and Art in the Bar
Mirza and Butler have worked together since 1998, developing a layered practice that consists of film, installation, performance, publishing and curating. Their work challenges terms such as participation, collaboration and the traditional roles of the artist as producer and the audience as recipient. For Artes Mundi 6, Mirza and Butler present The Unreliable Narrator, a constellation of works that take advantage of the gap between fiction and reality. In You are the Prime Minister, a prominent neon
becomes an empowering invitation to take up the title role in a fantasy fiction. A video installation also speaks of the 2008 Mumbai attacks, alternately from a position of the terrorists and of a seemingly impartial commentator.
Artes Mundi 6
Carlos Bunga, Omer Fast, Theaster Gates , Sanja Iveković, Ragnar Kjartansson, Sharon Lockhart, Renata Lucas, Renzo Martens and the Institute of Human Activity, Karen Mirza and Brad Butler.
We’re delighted to once again partner with Artes Mundi to present a core exhibition of works by some of this year’s Artes Mundi 6 shortlisted artists. The shortlist features a diverse selection of international artists spanning different generations and cultures but sharing important global themes. These include investigations into the politics of institutional and urban space and social control in the works of Renata Lucas, Carlos Bunga and Theaster Gates. Sanja Iveković, Omer Fast and Renzo Martens continue this thread but more specifically address media representation and manipulation.
Many of the artists on the shortlist work in collaboration with individuals and communities. For example, Sharon Lockhart’s poetic films and photographs involve working closely with her subjects over a long period of time, whilst the work of Karen Mirza and Brad Butler questions what we mean by collaboration and participation in their practice which includes film, performance, curating and publishing. Ragnar Kjartansson’s work also involves collaboration, often with musicians throughperformance and installations through which he explores themes of friendship, human emotions, love and beauty. All these artists use a wide range of media, actions and strategies to comment on what it means to be human in contemporary society.
The artists were chosen from more than 800 nominations by two invited selectors: Adam Budak, an independent curator currently based in Washington and Sabine Schaschl, Director and Curator of Museum Haus Konstruktiv, Zurich. They particularly looked for artists whose work explores and comments on the human condition and lived experience.
The exhibition opens to the public on October 24th 2014 and the remaining shortlisted artists will present work at National Museum Cardiff and Ffotogallery, Penarth. For more information visit www.artesmundi.org
Gallery images by Warren Orchard