Make every show like it’s your last
4 October – 29 November 2014
Make every show like it’s your last is the first solo exhibition on the island of Ireland by artist Ryan Gander.
Ryan Gander’s artistic practice is complex, playful and inquisitive. He has been described as a ‘cultural magpie’, who gleans information from multiple sources including advertising, art history, and his own family life.
In Make every show like it’s your last, the imaginary and real overlap and personal experiences are combined with the historical. The exhibition at CCA includes I is…(v), in which a den – created by the artist’s young daughter using a chair, a double bed sheet, a folding mattress and a cushion – is replicated in marble; combining the classical and monumental with the immediacy of a structure made by a child at play. In another work included in the CCA exhibition, Imagineering, Gander hired an advertising agency to create a short, fictional TV campaign designed to ‘promote imagination in the British public’. The film, scripted by Gander, appears to have been commissioned by the British government’s Department for Business, Innovation & Skills, and is presented as both an artwork and a commercial. In In Use – (Alchemy Box # 39), a sealed ‘In use’ illuminated sign usually found outside hospital examination rooms is installed in the gallery with its light turned off. The box contains objects from the collection of the artist on the subject of ‘power, corruption and lies’. They remain hidden, but a text on a wall close to the sign discloses a description of the objects within.
Over the last 15 years, Gander’s inventive, trans-disciplinary practice has included the production of books, scripts and plays; dinner floor plans; a cocktail compendium; designer trainers; a clothing line; a series of lamps designed by the artist for his wife, made from ad hoc materials; and a large sculpture placed in the lion enclosure at Mexico City Zoo. Make every show like it’s your last presents the experimentations of an artist who is considered one of the most influential of his generation; described by the BBC as ‘one of the world’s most exciting young talents … who challenges our preconceptions about conceptual art while imparting an infectious enthusiasm and curiosity for the world around him’.
Make every show like it’s your last at CCA is presented as part of an international touring programme. Ryan Gander’s new book, Culturefield, co-published by CCA on the occasion of the Make every show like it’s your last, is available for sale in the CCA library. Culturefield is edited by Ryan Gander and John Morgan, and includes texts by Maria Balshaw, former CCA directors Aileen Burns and Johan Lundh, Xavier Franceschi, Rebecca May Marston, Nigel Prince, and Jonathan P Watts.
The exhibition has been shown at Frac île-de-France / Le Plateau (Paris) and Manchester Art Gallery, and will travel to OK Offenes Kulturhaus/Center for Contemporary Art (Linz); Aspen Art Museum; Contemporary Art Gallery (Vancouver); and Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal.