Night Market Vol. 1
Curated by Klara Vincent-Novotna
28th April - 4th June 2019
Private view: 4th May 2019 6-9pm
Night Market Vol 1 is the first in a series of interventions exploring the bootleg as a distorted mirror of global Capital. Reflecting our market-driven ambitions and nostalgias, challenging the defined boundaries and definitions imposed by mass branding, the bootleg commands a chorus of unauthorized voices which mutate around familiar and established characters and brands. unleashing potential to alter hegemonic aesthetic forms. Any object of commodity follows a predictable curve: a spike in the market carves out room for a shadow economy of knock-offs, which allows consumers to engage or possess something they might not otherwise have access to. These, in turn, become objects of desire - performing an oblique dance with narratives of authenticity, visibility, and recognition. The thrill of possessing a coveted brand is amplified by the slightly-shady peculiarity of an unoffical copy, and fan-made media has the ability to destabilise the canon by altering or adding to the original storyline. This ultimately reflects demand; knockoffs exist in symbiotic dependence with the luxury brands which need them in order to demonstrate insatiable and wildfire desirability. In particular, Western monoliths of branding and the conditions of material production that evince specific global hierarchies are both fed and disrupted by copies, which endlessly permutate a brand's reach while revealing inherent flaws and artifice. As a creative practise, bootlegging suggests a poetic disregard for the norms of status-enforcing systems, negotiating class differences by adapting media and materials in inventive ways that resist the use value of the original, and using capital to do things it wasn't designed to do. Fan sites are more interesting than official ones, released albums are never as cool as their unofficial versions, and knockoff fashion hits the mark in ways the originals can only hint at; as a shapeshifting shadow of something authentic, a bootleg says more than an original ever could: . Half-doppleganger and half-thief, it signals the market death of the legitimate form, while paradoxically engaging its aura as an object of pure desire. Night Market v.1 presents a collection of such forms - illicit, janked up, unauthorized, and unmeasurably alluring. Everything you could possibly want starts here: under moonlit awning, illuminated in faint glow.
Lawrence 'Raw Dog' Hubbard
Jaqueline Ruther aka Mizucat