Courtesy Georg Kargl, Vienna
Georg Kargl BOX
Exhibition opening on Thursday, 23rd March 2006, 7 pm – 9 pm
Duration of exhibition: 24th March 2006 – 6 May 2006
Press brunch: Thursday, 23rd March 2006, 11 am
Costa Vece, born 1969 in Switzerland to Italian/Greek parents, became known internationally after participating in the 1999 Venice Biennal. Since the start of his career Vece prefered to work with cardboard and recyclable materials. His work presented in the Georg Kargl Box is yet another take on the topic Revolution – Patriotismo, a project shown around the world and that was originally started by Vece in Geneva in 2005. It will now be shown in Austria after travelling to Turin, Rome, Berlin and Amsterdam.
In this series of installations, Costa Vece engages with spaces as a whole by filling them with simple, everyday objects such as bricks, barbed wire and clothes found at flea markets, making the viewer feel both physically and psychological besieged and aware of his position as a continually changing social and political entity. While Vece defined his installations in Switzerland and Italy as delimited territory to which only he and the population of the respective country were allowed entry, the installation at the Georg Kargl BOX is accessible to all visitors. He has set up a tent occupying the whole room within the architecturally and functionally codified frame of the gallery using the national flags of foreigners from non-EU countries living in Austria. He thus focuses on those "second class" citizens who form armies of cheap, partially legalised, migrant workers in the construction or services sector. Each individual flag is made of used and discarded garments such as t-shirts, socks or jeans which bear traces of use and of the places of production the world over. By being used for making an artwork, the garments are torn out of the anonymous sphere of commodity circulation and placed in a tangible local context. The tent is furnished with a lamp, chairs, a table and a TV set, defining a private space within a public and institutionalised gallery space, a country within a country that fulfils the basic human needs of shelter and security. The idea for making a tent for Vienna was inspired by Muammar al Gaddafi's tradition of representation. On his State visits abroad, the potentate always brings along his Bedouin tent in which he then holds his receptions.
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