The Past is a Foreign Country & The Yellow Spot by Tilman Wendland

The Past is a Foreign Country & The Yellow Spot by Tilman Wendland

Centre of Contemporary Art Znaki Czasu in Torun (CoCA)

The Past is a Foreign Country
Photo by Wojtek Olech, CoCA in Torun, 2010

February 5, 2010

The Past is a Foreign Country
January 22 – February 5, 2010

Waly gen. Sikorskiego 13
87-100 Torun, Poland

22.01.2010 – 02.05.2010

artists: Johanna Billing / Persijn Broersen & Margit Lukács / Banu Cennetoǧlu / Šejla Kamerić / Deimantas Narkevičius / Agnieszka Polska / Jasper Rigole / Slavs and Tatars / Jutta Strohmaier / Levi van Veluw / Ingrid Wildi / Krzysztof Zieliński / Edwin Zwakman

curators: Aleksandra Kononiuk, Agnieszka Pindera
exhibition design: Jeroen de Vries
graphic design: Kasia Korczak & Boy Vereecken

The international exhibition entitled The Past is a Foreign Country presents the works of artists that materialize places from memories, animate invented geographies, ask questions concerning their connection to identity and analyze the nature of remembering and forgetting.

The exhibition area is arranged by the Dutch artist Jeroen de Vries, who thus refers to phrenology – the picturesque scientific theory of the turn of the 18th century that binds together geography and the human mind. It described the brain as a mosaic of areas, different in form and structure, that are responsible for the various physiological functions of the body.

Despite the fact that the 19th century metaphor of the human brain did not find scientific confirmation, it brings about the connotation to the phenomenological approach to place, which was propagated by humanistic geography in the 1970s. Humanistic geography defines place as an area accumulating emotions, habits and customs. Places appear gradually, they gain their “bulge”, their complexity and features over time, in the process of gathering memories and meanings.

The Past is a Foreign Country creates a map of recreated and invented places, an accumulation of various emotions – nostalgia, despair, irony, happiness – thus posing the question: what is place today?

Tilman Wendland
26.02.2010 – 30.05.2010
curator: Kasha Bittner

The Yellow Spot project is an individual exhibition by Berlin-based artist Tilman Wendland. His objects and installations are always preceded by detailed research into the context of a given project and determined by the space in which they are created, chosen material and the process of laborious work. Incorporating simple white materials (paper, cardboard or hardboard), Wendland’s works seem both absent and present – as though they had always been there, which confirms the contingent nature of the concept of “finiteness” of space.

Invited to work in the biggest space at the CoCA in Toruń, the artist had to face its monumental nature and huge cubic capacity. Yellow Spot is not only a site specific installation but also the first ever project since the CoCA was inaugurated meant to deal with the architectural and conceptual aspects of the found space. Accommodated in a “frame” that is so overtly architectural with formal features referring to the architecture canon and that poses as a classic “temple of art”, the installation is close to reflections on the contemporary concept of exhibition space. Interestingly, while these reflections have been changing over the last years in ideological, programme and mental terms, a new exhibition space in Toruń, a classic white cube, is formally designed as a “temple of arts”.

Marshall Office of Kuyavia and Pomerania, Embassy of the Republic of Lithuania, Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Mondriaan Foundation, Austrian Culture Forum, Torun2016 European Capital of Culture, Tikkurila, Brandenburgischer Kunstverein Postdam, Stiftung fȕr Deutsch-Polnische Zusammenarbeit, Henkell Trocken, Optymex

AMS, Gazeta Wyborcza, TVP Kultura, Umělec, Art&Business, Piktogram, CzasKultury, BęcZmiana, Arteon, Exit, Architektura&Biznes, Autoportret,,,,,,

CoCA in Torun is one of the newest institutions solely dedicated to contemporary art in Poland. With its intermedia and interdisciplinary formula, a multi-format program and international cooperation, CoCA presents the most interesting facets of contemporary art.

Visit us!
Centre of Contemporary Art “Znaki Czasu” in Torun
Waly gen. Sikorskiego 13
87-100 Torun, Poland

For more information:
Kasia Toczko
tel. +48 56 610 97 23
mob. +48 666 871 624

Centre of Contemporary Art Znaki Czasu in Torun

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February 5, 2010

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