Haunted: Contemporary Photography/Video/Performance
6 November 2010 – 13 March 2011Guggenheim Museum Bilbao
Avenida Abandoibarra, 2 48001
Location: Second floor of the museum
From November 6, 2010, until March 13, 2011, the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao will host Haunted: Contemporary Photography/Video/ Performance, an exhibition featuring over one hundred works by sixty different artists who examine myriad ways in which photographic imagery is incorporated into recent art, with the aim of underscoring the unique power of recording technologies and documenting a widespread contemporary obsession with accessing the past, both collective and individual.
The exhibition was on display at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York until September 6 of this year, where it met with great success. In Bilbao, sixty new works will be included alongside selections from the initial presentation, some of which have never been exhibited in Spain before.
Much of contemporary photography and video seems haunted by the past, by the history of art, by apparitions that are reanimated in recording technologies, live performance and the virtual world. By using dated, passé or quasi-extinct stylistic devices, subject matters and technologies, such art embodies a melancholic longing for an otherwise unrecoverable past.
With a particular emphasis on photography, but also including other forms of artistic expression such as painting, video, film, performance and installation art from the 1960s to the present day, Haunted is co-curated by Jennifer Blessing, Curator of Photography, and Nat Trotman, Associate Curator, both from the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York, and reveals the extraordinary quality of the photographic and new media works in the Guggenheim Collections.
Haunted in Bilbao
The exhibition at the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao will feature recent acquisitions made by the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, including works by Marina Abramović, Sophie Calle, Tacita Dean, Gregory Crewdson, Thomas Demand, Roni Horn, Christian Marclay, Richard Prince, Cindy Sherman, Hiroshi Sugimoto and Jeff Wall. It will also include artworks created in the 1960s and 70s by artists such as Andy Warhol, Bernd and Hilla Becher, Joan Jonas, Robert Rauschenberg, Martha Rosler and Robert Smithson, which represent the incorporation of photographic images in contemporary art on a massive scale and will help put more recent works in context.
Finally, a significant part of the show will be dedicated to works created after 2001 by young artists such as Walead Beshty, Anne Collier, Rachel Harrison, and Idris Khan, as well as others not included in the New York exhibition: the American artists Slater Bradley, Lucinda Devlin, Lia Halloran, Matt Keegan, Ryan McGinley, Lisa Oppenheim, Aida Ruilova, and Lorna Simpson; Carlos Garaicoa from Cuba; Diego Perrone from Italy; the Australian artist Tracey Moffatt; and the Lebanese artist Walid Raad.
Haunted: Contemporary Photography/Video/Performance, which occupies the second floor of the museum, is divided into five formal and conceptual categories which reflect the different ways in which the participating artists choose to understand and address the past: Appropriation and the Archive; Death, Publicity and Politics; Documentation and Reiteration; Landscape, Architecture and the Passage of Time; and Trauma and the Uncanny.
Some works incorporate stylistic devices and subject matters that seem dated, passé or quasi-extinct; others capture traumatic moments of the historical past; some are recreations of previous works, creating the sensation that they are pursued by a lost or distant original; there are ghostly images and morbid symbols of the past as ruins and apocalyptic landscapes; and, finally, there are creations that analyze the role that archives play in collective memory and personal obsession.