It has been observed that a condition of impending doom haunts millennial culture. How quickly the dark omens become real (or unreal or are for now deferred) remains to be seen. There is a kind of anxiety in a state of negative anticipation, and yet a dark pleasure, but it is evident we feel ourselves at a threshold. The aim of this exhibition is to stimulate a mutual energy, a static spark in still air like a state of expectation or risk.
Artists Matt Calderwood (United Kingdom), Stephanie Mann (United Kingdom) and Josep Maynou (Spain/ Germany) explore the aesthetics and humour found within states of imminent collapse. The selected videos and sculpture pose antonym pairings – balance / unbalance, start / stop, work / play – suggesting games of resistance that let slip the dualisms, the contradictions, the instabilities and the vulnerabilities of action, and in the end challenging such dualisms entirely. In diverse materials and processes, using chance and possibility, the artists create situations destined to fail, fall and topple over into constituent parts and potentials. This is the process of life.
If I do nothing, nothing does takes its title from the last line of the poem Mexican Loneliness by Jack Kerouac. Kerouac sketches a state of existential emotional conflict of in which doing and not doing blur in an extended moment of anticipation, state of about-to-be. Mexican Loneliness is a part of a larger work, Mexico City Blues, written between 1954 and 1957 and published in 1959.
In art, as in life, not everything unbalanced is unbeautiful.