This lecture will look at how an exhibition simultaneously makes points of view possible and impossible. On the one hand it simply presents (say, images, texts or objects), while always also representing (say, subjects and values). On the other hand each exhibition, as a constellation, excludes more than it includes, and as such depresents. Depresentation will here be understood as part and parcel of exhibition-making, but also in terms of not showing at all. The notion of the No Show will be discussed in terms of the exhibition project that is not an exhibition, i.e. a curatorial format that deconstructs or undoes the exhibition itself, as well as in terms of rejection from possible publics not showing up, or, as a recent tool in contemporary art discourse, through the plea for boycotts of specific events and institutions, as a way of demonstration, that is of showing by calling for the no show.
LectureThe Show and the No Show: Approaches to Presentation, Representation and Depresentation
Dr. Simon Sheikh is a curator and theorist. He is Reader in Art and Programme Director of MFA Curating at Goldsmiths, University of London. He is a correspondent for Springerin, Vienna, and a columnist for e-flux Journal, New York. Recent publications include Former West: Art and the Contemporary After 1989, 2016 (with Maria Hlavajova), and Curating After the Global, 2019 (with Paul O’Neill, Lucy Steeds and Mick Wilson). He is currently a member of the core group for the 3rd Bergen Assembly, Actually, the Dead are Not.