With a motto adapted from BBC founder John Reith’s remit to “Inform, Educate, Entertain”, Marabouparken has the pleasure of opening this autumn’s exhibition of works by the British artist Olivia Plender.
Information, Education, Entertainment is a thematic solo exhibition which focuses on the TV medium and the art world portrayal of art and artists. The work Monitor (2006–2007) is a slide show essay with an accompanying soundtrack based on the screenplay from a TV programme Private View. The original episode was a part of the BBC’s first arts series Monitor, screened in 1960. The photographs in the slideshow are images of contemporary London based around the narrative of the soundtrack. Together, slide show and soundtrack, tell the story of the changing conditions of art and the gentrification of working class areas of London. The piece was originally presented as a performance at the Tate Triennial but is here shown as an installation.
The installation Ken Russell in Conversation with Olivia Plender (2005) includes the video documentation of an interview between Olivia Plender and the controversial filmmaker. The interview took place before an audience in a stage set reminiscent of TV studios from the 1970s. The topics covered include the experimental documentaries and artist’s portraits Ken Russell made for the BBC in the 60s, the Romantic idea of artistic genius, questions of taste and style and the controversies about him as a media celebrity and filmmaker. Russell’s media persona becomes an image of double-ness as he simultaneously tries to represent and live the role of the artistic genius. With the moralising narrative tone of a nineteenth century temperance movement pamphlet, the most recent episode of Olivia Plender’s ongoing comic book project The Masterpiece (2001-) follows the fate and adventures of the young artist Nick. At Marabouparken, the latest edition The Road to Ruin (for Öyvind Fahlström) (2006) will be presented both as a comic book and as an installation with the characters as life-size cut outs. This episode takes place in the 1980s and we follow Nick as he grapples with the sponsorship ideas of the mega-corporation Bucks, demonstrating how the Romantic notion of genius reinvents itself to adapt to a neo-liberal logic.
During the exhibition Information, Education, Entertainment a programme of film screenings and talks has been put together in cooperation with Filmklubben (the Film Club), a mobile platform for political film. The programme will focus on how the artist is portrayed by television and the art world and on public service media as an ideological tool. Dates and times will be available on Marabouparken homepage from October 11th.