‘Culture, Construction and Citizenship’ A public presentation by artist in residence, Emilio Moreno
Iziko South African National Gallery, 1 September 2012, 14.00hrs
The Annex Residency Programme, a new initiative working in partnership with Iziko Museums’ Education & Public Programmes and Art Collections departments, as well as international funding bodies, is pleased to invite you to a public presentation by artist in residence, Emilio Moreno (Spain, 1980). On Saturday, 1 September, 2012 at 14.00 at the South African National Gallery, Emilio Moreno will present elements of his artistic practice and the research produced during his stay in South Africa (from July-August, 2012).
How are cultural values formed? In what ways is the notion of history constructed? – are the questions that led Emilio Moreno to South Africa where he has been engaging with a number of national institutions, heritage sites, collections and individual practitioners.
Besides studying natural history treasures (such as fossils and prehistoric manifestations) he has been investigating the historical importance of mining in South Africa as a crossroad between nature, culture and economy. In addition, the artist has also been exploring the stories that make up history, collaborating with local folklorists to uncover the role of narrative in creating worldviews.
On Saturday 1 September, 2012, Emilio Moreno’s presentation will adopt an expanded form of the “essay”. Not only meaning a long text, the word comes from the French: “essayer” or “to try”. And indeed, following his intensive research period here, the artist considers the thoughts and forms produced at this first stage to exist as ore, or raw material, which will be processed in the months to come.
Emilio Moreno’s residency is being generously supported by MzansiCultura.es (Embassy of Spain in South Africa).
About Emilio Moreno
Emilio Moreno is an artist currently investigating different notions of value. His interest lies in tracing the biographies of objects and actions, and how, together with language, these elements journey through a range of value statuses. The overarching question compelling his research is that of how history/stories are constructed – asking what political imperatives and literary devices are at work within them.
In the artist’s own words:
“Living in an historical moment of change, in which the values that once supported the idea of the welfare state seem to be obsolete in Europe – when culture and citizenship are being reduced to market viability – it seems fundamental to research what I consider the 3 basic pillars supporting our construction of different notions of value. In my project Other Issues (2010-11) I focused on currency as a consequence of the relationships between people. And in The Order Book (Thin Air Road For Dorothy) (2012) I investigated language as mankind’s attempt to define the world in order to take a position. During my research period in South Africa I’d like to concentrate on the third aspect – the notion of History – approaching it from two perspectives: a) nature and its so-called wisdom (evolution) and b) the accumulation of experience, knowledge and beliefs: culture.”
While a contributing artist to the Annex Residency Programme, Moreno is conducting extensive research in close contact with paleontologists, archaeologists, curators and staff from several museums of Natural History and universities in South Africa in order to situate his interests in a South African context. Besides studying natural history treasures (such as fossils and prehistoric utensils) he is also exploring the historical importance of mining in South Africa as a crossroad between nature, culture and economy. Apart from visiting local gold and diamond mines, he has also been working at the Cradle of Humankind, as a site of geological and archaeological significance where more than a third of the oldest hominid fossils have been found.
ABOUT THE ANNEX RESIDENCY PROGRAMME
The Annex Residency Programme is a new initiative working in partnership with Iziko Museums’ Education & Public Programmes and Art Collections departments, as well as international funding bodies to invite young artists from both international and South African locales to Cape Town for a period of six weeks. During this time, residents may conduct a situated creative research together with a growing community of local collaborators. ‘Art doesn’t happened in isolation. It seems obvious but it bears repeating,’ says the programme’s curator, Clare Butcher. The Annex Residency Programme is therefore focused on forming unlikely connections between places, practices and people through artistic practice
MzansiCultura.es is the name of the cultural programme of the Embassy of Spain in South Africa. It focuses on promotion of Spanish arts, cultural cooperation and culture & development. Emilio Moreno’s residency is being generously supported by MzansiCultura.es.
Contact and further information:
More information about the Annex Residency Programme and Emilio Moreno’s research process can be found on http://annexresidency.tumblr.com. And to receive notifications and announcements of activities please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Lately, the work of Emilio Moreno (Spain 1980) has been made public with the group show The Grand Domestic Revolution, (Casco, Office for Art, Design and Theory. Utrecht, NL), the second publication of The Autonomy Project (Van Abbemuseum / Onomatopee, NL), the lectures A Bewitched System (Centro de Arte Dos de Mayo. Madrid, ESP) and the project 18 images / 18 stories (If I Can’t Dance I don’t Want to Be Part of Your Revolution + Bulegoa z/b. Amsterdam, NL). Emilio Moreno currently teaches at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy, in Amsterdam, where he lives.