LOOP Barcelona 2017:
Building bridging between the past and present

LOOP Barcelona 2017:
Building bridging between the past and present

LOOP Barcelona

View of (Re)visionats, (Re)visitats at Arts Santa Mónica, Barcelona, 2017. Photo: Marta Becerra.
June 6, 2017

Festival: May 18–27
Fair & talks: May 25–26

LOOP Barcelona
C/ Enrique Granados 3, Principal
08007 Barcelona

T +34 932 155 260
communication [​at​] loop-barcelona.com

In its 15th edition titled “Winding the Clock Back – A contemporary archaeology of video,” LOOP Barcelona has carried out a retrospective analysis of early video art, with the intention of recovering and restoring historical pieces, while paying homage to those pioneering artists who contributed to the positioning of video as a creative practice. 

With the collaboration of more than 40 local and international curators, and the constant advice of video art experts Eugeni Bonet and Antoni Mercader, the festival spread through the city of Barcelona with more than 350 videographic proposals, by almost 200 artists. The programming emerged from the desire to preserve and promote video art heritage, while at the same time perpetratingLOOP’s long-standing commitment to supporting contemporary production.

In an attempt to build bridges between the past and present, the selection hence focused on the work of reference artists such as Steina and Woody Vasulka, Chip Lord, Muntadas, Beryl Korot, Mary Lucier, Martha Rosler, Andy Warhol, Antoni Miralda, Tony Oursler and Paul McCarthy, among others, and the presentation of contemporary proposals by practitioners such as David Claerbout and Wael Shawky. To broaden the current panorama, the Co-Production award and the LOOP Discover Award, granted to COS SOCIAL [Llicó d’Anatomy] (2017) by Joan Morey and Volva (2016) by Edouard Decam, respectively. 

This year’s programme has been further enhanced by a research and editorial effort towards the patrimonialisation of video art, which materialized in the digitization and online presentation of historical documents related with video in Spain; the publication of Video Writings by Artists (1970-1990), a compilation of reference artists’ texts, edited by Eugeni Bonet; and the launch of VIDEOCLOOP, an online platform of artist films and videos from LOOP’s past editions, aimed at art professionals and researchers, among other things. 

The festival then ended with two days of professional encounter that unfolded in the LOOP Fair, the Talks and the Professional Meetings that gathered together more than 3,800 artists, collectors, gallerists, curators, museum directors and film producers internationally, to discuss the cogent issues surrounding the moving image. 

Following the edition’s main theme, LOOP Fair reviewed pioneering video works as a way to understand current audiovisual production. The selection included 45 videos by artists of 28 nationalities, presented by 45 galleries from 20 different countries, in this way showing an up-to-date panorama of moving image production. The Fair kept encouraging collecting, as a fundamental act towards the development and formalization of artistic thinking. 

This year, the LOOP Acquisition Award, supported by the Hoteles Catalonia, to the best artist video presented at LOOP Fair, which is acquired and included in the LOOP Collection and later lent to the MACBA, was given to El éxtasis debe ser olvidado [Ecstasy Should Be Forgotten] (2017) by the young Greek artist Evangelia Kranioti presented by Galerie Sator, Paris; while the LOOP Fair Award for the best gallery proposal went to A Thousand Plateaus Art Space (Chengdu, China), featuring Chen Qiulin and her film Farewell Poem (2002). The jury was formed by Ferrán Barenblit (MACBA, Barcelona), Kathryn Weir (Centre Pompidou, Paris), and Irene Calderoni (Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Turin). In addition, the Fair made possible the growth of collections that largely include video, by presenting for the first time the Amíster Collection Prize, awarded to Me and My Sister (2010) by Elke Andreas Boon, with Annie Gentils Gallery (Antwerp, Belgium).

Last but not least, the LOOP Talks added to the “contemporary archeology of video” proposed by the festival, with the intention of offering a current reading of video’s early days. Renowned pioneering artists like Steina and Woody Vasulka, Muntadas, Mary Lucier, Beryl Korot and Chip Lord engaged in conversations with curators from peer and younger generations like Kristin Scheving, Don Foresta, Neus Miró, Berta Sichel, Vincent Fremont, Menene Gras and Jin-suk Suh, so to establish critical and formal connections between the past and present. 

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June 6, 2017

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