Korean/Finnish artist duo
NANA & FELIX
Ongoing project, A History of Art
The main aim of this project is to portray the state of perseverance behind artworks and the artists that produce them. No matter the country artists are based in, most of them face the same challenges: the arduous economic system artists operate within, constantly expected to produce new works for more exhibitions, of- ten expected to pay for both themselves. In order to manage, we file countless grant applications and work odd jobs so that we can eat and produce artworks that prob- ably will be exhibited once or twice, then wrapped in bubble wrap, in cardboard and/or wooden boxes, plastic bags, and hard drives, and stored wherever space can be found. From all these aspects, we found intriguing resemblances among the stored artworks, piles of exhibition invitations and odd jobs that artists have to do for money; a state of waiting, endurance and uncertainty, unwillingly hidden and pushed aside.
This project deals with, and nurtures from, the intriguing resemblances among stored artworks, piles of exhibition invitations and odd jobs that artists have to do to stay afloat; a state of waiting, endurance and uncertainty, unwillingly hidden and pushed aside.
The project consist of four main parts.
1. ARTEFACTS; a series of small, three dimensional works made out of exhibition invitations.
These pieces will be hung on the walls, distributed around the entire gallery space. The sculptural assemblages are made of exhibition flyers that we have collected during the years. We chose to work with the exhibition flyers as they often are the only physical remnant of any exhibition. Reassembling the flyers into new works is our homage to past exhibitions, great art that has been all but forgotten.
2. ARTWORKS; Photographic documentation of other artists’ stored artworks. Displayed in a printed zine format.
Since 2017, we have been creating a database of “surplus” art. We have been documenting other artists’ studios, storages and houses where dormant artworks are kept. Some have turned wooden crates into tables; others squeeze them in the wardrobe. Some even have entire storages. What they all have in common is that they, like the overwhelming majority of all artwork worldwide, are stored, stowed away. Funnily enough, it is not only expensive to make art, but once made these physical objects become economic burdens for their creators.
3. FINE ARTISTS AT WORK; a series of portraits of artists at their odd jobs
Sticking to the theme of the project, all the additional PR materials will be turned into artworks in their own right. The all-important artists CV will be comprised only of the “real” jobs we have done during our careers, ranging from unemployment benefits to dishwashing, art-grants and van driver. The Exhibition flyers will feature photographs us, portrayed at our respective part-time jobs.
4. OEUVRE; an installation consisting of all the artworks we have produced and stored in Finland.
Most of the floor space will be occupied by an installation consisting of our own, stored, artworks. The artworks will be exhibited in their normal state; wrapped in bubble wrap, in cardboard and/or wooden boxes, plastic bags, memory sticks, DVDs etc., so as to rejoice in this DIY aesthetic of the packaging – so often in so stark contrast with the meticulously finished content of the artworks it protects. The packages will be treated as artworks in their own right, carefully placed in the gallery, with the appropriate lighting.