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  • Phil Collins, britney #3, 2001, photo: Jean-Baptiste Béranger
    Phil Collins, britney #3, 2001, photo: Jean-Baptiste Béranger
19 March 2011–24 July 2011

Phil Collins – The world won’t listen

A suite of screenprints from 2006 are based on letters that a young Morrissey, himself an obsessive fan and at the time an aspiring music writer, wrote to the London music weeklies in the late ‘70s and early ‘80s. Collins brings back to light a selection of these passionate and sharp-tongued contributions, which only rarely made it into the reviews proper. These works expand on one of the central aspects of the world won’t listen, namely the issue of fandom and cultural fascination.

Phil Collins, the world won't listen, 2004-7, photo: Jean-Baptiste Béranger
Phil Collins, the world won't listen, 2004-7, photo: Jean-Baptiste Béranger
Phil Collins, the world won't listen, 2004-7, Courtesy Shady Lane Productions.
Phil Collins, the world won't listen, 2004-7, Courtesy Shady Lane Productions.
Phil Collins, the world won't listen, 2004-7, Courtesy Shady Lane Productions.
Phil Collins, the world won't listen, 2004-7, Courtesy Shady Lane Productions.

In the exhibition at Marabouparken, Phil Collins presents his acclaimed three-part video installation the world won’t listen. Filmed in Colombia, Turkey and Indonesia, the trilogy features fans of the influential indie-rock band The Smiths performing karaoke versions of tracks from their 1987 compilation album of the same name. Collins first began work on the world won’t listen in 2004 in Bogotá, where he re-recorded the album note for note with local musicians and created a fully functioning karaoke machine. The second part took place in Istanbul in 2005 and was included in the 9th International Istanbul Biennial. The final part was filmed in 2007 in Jakarta and Bandung, the hotbeds of a flowering Indonesian rock-scene. Out of hundreds of takes from each country, Collins re-assembled the world won’t listen in its original running order, thus creating a collection of ‘video-albums.’ A tender, humorous, and occasionally heartbreaking portrait of humanity, the work is a study on the mediation and strength of popular culture’s global reach. the world won’t listen is in many ways representative of the collaborative and participatory situations with which Collins’ art is frequently associated. At the same time, it exemplifies the central dichotomy that lies at the heart of his diverse practice, between the emotional core of lens-based media and their ultimate potential for manipulation.   

Phil Collins, SOUNDS, August 12, 1978 (2006), SOUNDS October 27, 1979 (2006), RECORD MIRROR, March 29, 1980 (2006), photo: Jean-Baptiste Béranger.
Phil Collins, SOUNDS, August 12, 1978 (2006), SOUNDS October 27, 1979 (2006), RECORD MIRROR, March 29, 1980 (2006), photo: Jean-Baptiste Béranger.
Phil Collins, britney #3, 2001, Courtesy Shady Lane Productions.
Phil Collins, britney #3, 2001, Courtesy Shady Lane Productions.
Phil Collins, el mundo no escuchará, 2004, Courtesy Shady Lane Productions.
Phil Collins, el mundo no escuchará, 2004, Courtesy Shady Lane Productions.

The photographic series britney comprises large-scale prints of defaced Britney Spears posters which Collins photographed in the New York subway in late 2001. Infusing these discarded and abject images, caught in an extreme close-up, with formal precision and a pseudo-monumental pathos, it is as if the artist is implying that the camera, the original agent of her spectacular degradation, might now be able to re-humanise the fallen star.

Phil Collins is born in 1970 in Runcorn, UK. At the moment he lives and works in Berlin.