THE WELFARE SHOW
MICHAEL ELMGREEN & INGAR DRAGSET
26th. of May 21st. of August 2005
Opening Thursday May 26th, 1 pm
Bergen Kunsthall is pleased to present THE WELFARE SHOW, an exhibition by Michael Elmgreen & Ingar Dragset.
Over the past ten years the artist duo have been challenging our conventional understanding of social spaces and institutional services in society. Through works consisting of objects, performances and installations, Elmgreen & Dragset have put architectural symbols under the microscope, dissected their signifying components and constructed new meanings by stitching them back together in new configurations.
At Bergen Kunsthall, Elmgreen & Dragset summarize previous topics in a larger context, and will present new sculptures and installations specifically produced for this occasion. Entitled The Welfare Show the exhibition will comment on issues that can be linked to the so-called welfare model. What is the current character of the welfare state? How liberal and socially responsible is it? Has it ever actually existed? To what extent is our political system now threatened by globalisation and multinational powers? No one will find any definite answers or conclusions within the show, but quite a few preconceptions might be turned upside down as spectators are drawn through this mini-society of the mellow grotesque where boundaries between institution, entertainment and reality are blurred and displaced. The show must go on!
The Welfare Show in Bergen Kunsthall is Elmgreen & Dragsets first major solo exhibition in Norway, and during 2005 it will be touring to BAWAG Foundation in Vienna and later to The Power Plant in Toronto.
A catalogue with the same title will accompany the exhibition.
Throughout their 10 years of collaboration, Elmgreen & Draset have had solo exhibitions at Tate Modern, London; Statens Museum for Kunst, Copenhagen; Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin and recently at The Bohen Foundation in New York. They have participated in numerous international group shows including venues like MCA in Chicago, Manifesta 3 and the Venice, Sao Paulo and Berlin biennials.