Anywhere in the World: David Medalla's London
Curated by Guy Brett.
6-11 September 2005
David Medalla, Director of London Biennale, will be the subject of a major
exhibition at the ICA - the Institute of Contemporary Art - on the Mall
in London, England. The exhibition, entitled "Anywhere in the World: David
Medalla's London" is being curated by English art critic Guy Brett, who
was recently a Visiting Scholar in Art History at Harvard University. The
exhibition is the fourth in a new series of shows organised by Jens Hoffman,
Exhibitions at the ICA London, with the ICA Exhibitions team.
The series is entitled "London in Six Easy Steps: Six Curators, Six Weeks,
David Medalla's exhibition will feature
large-scale prints in
limited editions of a selection of Medalla's impromptus and performances in
the last forty-five years. The photos were taken by Guy Brett, Andre
Kertez, Stephen Maria Rother, Giorgio Spiller, Fritz Stolberg, Leif
Svendsen, Andy Barrett, Adam Nankervis, Raoul Tenazas, John Dugger, Kai
Hilgemann, Kim Creighton, Manuel Cristaldi, Enrico Oliviero, GG Cazzavillan,
Michele Herzog, Lovato Guerrino, Charlotte Moth, Rachael Daniels, Andrew
Forrest, Emil Cadoo, Andree Navarro, Pedro Uhart, Katie Sollohub, Marko
Stepanov, Arvinder Bawa, Maggie Lambert, Clay Perry, Peter Emanuel Goldman,
Peter Fillingham, Oriol de Quadras, Mark Greaves, Antonio Roda, and others.
Three iconic sculptures by David Medalla will be on show: the
exquisite "Micro -Merz -Bau: in homage to Kurt Schwitters" (a miniature
study for a large-scale fountain), originally shown in Brantwood, the home
of John Ruskin, in an exhibition curated by Jill Rock; the Gold-Glazed
Ceramic Incense Burner, shown early this year in the WC Gallery of Stephen
Perkins in De Pere, Wisconsin; and the micro-installation for David
Medalla's Palindromic Play entitled "Tar Pot Eb Ot Woh" which he presented
with members of the Exploding Galaxy at the University of Warwick in 1967.
David Medalla's "Bubble Machine" of 1963 (the first work of
auto-creative art) is illustrated in the book "Art Since 1900" by Hal
Foster, Rosalind Krauss, Benjamin H. D. Buchloh and Yve-Alain Bois.
A vitrine in the exhibition will contain the two books of the
2002 and 2004 London Biennale events and of Eros-Arrows by London Biennale
Artists, lovingly compiled by Spanish
artist Marisol Cavia.
The exhibition opens on Tuesday, September 6, 2005, at 6 p.m.,
with a parade of Self-Portrait - Effigies by London Biennale artists,
starting from the Eros statue on Piccadilly Circus in central London and
culminating in the lower main gallery of the ICA on the Mall.
Inside the gallery, Australian artist Adam Nankervis (founder &
director of MUSEUM MAN of Liverpool and Berlin) will perform "The Midas
Moth" in homage to David Medalla, co-founder with Nankervis of the MONDRIAN
FAN CLUB. At 7:30 the same evening, Guy Brett will give a talk on David
Medalla's art in the upper gallery of the ICA.
Throughout the time-span of the exhibition several London
Biennale artists will give performances. These include an afternoon of
poetry readings and songs on Wednesday, September 7, 2005, featuring Chris
Burke, Adrian Fisher, Ricardo Gaete, Jon Gershon, Roberta Kravitz, Luna
Montenegro, Richard Niman, Sarah Reilly, Jill Rock, Ernesto Sarezale, and
On Thursday, September 8, 2005, David Medalla will continue
his participatory art propulsion entitled "Destiny" which he began this
summer on Brighton Beach in Sussex, England, during "Long Short Drift"
organised by Katie Sollohub. German artist Andreas Uhl will do an
intervention, followed at 6:30 p.m. with a performance entitled "Network" by
Frauke Ehmke, supported by "Detour Consulting".
On Friday, September 9, 2005, throughout the afternoon, three
London-based French artists (Regine Elliott, Geraldine Gallavardin and Cyril
Lepetit) will give three separate performances. The occasion will also be
the London launch of Cyril Lepetit's book, "Infidelites Respecteuses",
published on the occasion of his solo show at the Centre Culturelle de
Basse-Normandie in Caen, France.
On Saturday, September 10, 2005, there will be separate
performances by English artists Jill Rock and Calum Kerr, Regine Elliott of
France & Mabel Encinas of Cuba, Saso Stanojkovik from Macedonia, Felma Barbo
and Mmmmm (Luna Montenegro from Santiago de Chile & Adrian Fisher from
On Sunday, September 11, 2005, at three in the afternoon,
Mexican artist Raul Pina will give a performance, followed by a talk and
slides-show by Gulsen Bal about Sexy Male Wrestling in her native Turkey.
The talk will segue into the main event of the exhibition, which is being
eagerly awaited by the art world in London: the COSMIC WRESTLING MATCH
between Adam Nankervis (as "The Ghost of Joseph Beuys") versus David Medalla
(as "The Spirit of Marcel Duchamp aka Rros Selavy"). The referee for this
metaphorical wrestling match (a unique live event which will last several
rounds) will be Guy Brett. The Gong Master will be Marko Stepanov. English
artist James Moores will be the Bets Vetter aka The Bookie. The viola player
will be Miles Christie. The seconds will be Dan Bourke, Gordon Johnstone and
Tiago Slewinski. The ICA in London was the venue of a live event by Joseph
Beuys, while the founders of the ICA (Sir Herbert Read and Roland Penrose)
were personal friends of Marcel Duchamp. Nankervis and Medalla's Wrestling
Match will be their Double-Homage to those two Masters of Modern Art.
After the wrestling match, there will be a Grand Dance of the
Effigies. Among London Biennale artists living abroad who have sent Effigies
for David Medalla's exhibition are American artists Reynolds, Raphael
Norman-Tenazas and Nick Kuskin, and Canadian artists Nancy Petry and Bryan
Mulvihill aka World Tea Master Trolley. Many London Biennale artists living
in England have created a wonderful collection of beautiful Effigies. They
will dance with their Effigies and exchange Effigies with one another after
tossing them in the air with a hand-held trampoline made of a red silk cloth
embroidered with celestial dragons. Filipino artist David Medalla, the
founder and director of the London Biennale, has shown previously in the ICA
London: in 1973 with American artist John Dugger, Banner Arts master and
creator of the participatory project entitled "People Weave A House", and in
1978 with Catalan artist Oriol de Quadras, when they gave their multi-media
performance entitled "Magellan and the Circumnavigation of the World".