The Government

With Ibon Aranberri (Bilbao), Maja Bajevic (Paris), Archiv Tucumán Arde (betreut von Graciela Carnevale; in Zusammenarbeit mit Alice Creischer und Andreas Siekmann), Alice Creischer (Berlin), Danica Dakic (Düsseldorf), Filmen von Maya Deren, Ines Doujak (Vienna), Patrick Faigenbaum (Paris), Harun Farocki (Berlin), Peter Friedl, Andrea Geyer (New York), Filmen von Jean-Luc Godard, Dmitry Gutov (Moskau), Sanja Ivekovic (Zagreb), Emily Jacir (Ramallah/New York), Jocelyne Lemaire-Darnaud (Le Pré Saint Gervais), Rainer Oldendorf (Paris), Lisl Ponger (Vienna), Florian Pumhösl (Vienna), Alejandra Riera (Paris), Martha Rosler, Dierk Schmidt (Berlin), Allan Sekula (Los Angeles), Andreas Siekmann (Berlin), Simon Wachsmuth (Berlin), und anderen.

How do we want to be governed? - Michel Foucault posed this piquant question about a quarter of a century ago. At that time, the erosion of the Western-style welfare state was just beginning to take shape; there was still no sign of the collapse of the state socialist systems. If we look at the late medieval frescoes on good and bad government in the town hall of Siena, we realize that the question posed at the beginning must be much older. For Foucault and for Lorenzetti, as well as for this exhibition, government is conceived as a form of indirect exercise of power. It is not the spectacular direct access of state authorities to their citizens or non-citizens that is meant. No, it is - quite abstractly - about actions that structure other actions (the spaces of action of others). As the permanently waged “war on terror” shows, which again and again gives birth to new coercive measures and states of emergency, or as the precarization of labor relations with its effect of collective desolidarization proves, the indirect government (unfortunately, unfortunately) functions quite splendidly.

Now “The Government” not only forms the subject of our exhibition, it also gives it the form. Like a three-dimensional film that expands in space and time and thereby develops its audience along with it, the same artistic works are placed in different constellations in relation to each other: sometimes this with that, sometimes this with that. For the aim is to make connections visible: on the one hand, between geo-political hotspots that, like the Basque country or Jerusalem, have little more in common than being bloodied by the same rationality - by the inconceivability of shared sovereignty. On the other hand, between artistic methods that can owe themselves to completely different traditions and yet communicate with each other in the medium of the exhibition.

Concept: Roger M. Buergel and Ruth Noack, in collaboration with Antke Engel and Jorge Ribalta and Nina Brodowski, Larissa Buchholz, Miren Etxezzareta, Marlene Heidel, Sonja Parzefall, Sophia Prinz, Joan Roca i Albert, Diethelm Stoller, Polina Stroganova, Wanda Wieczorek and Ulf Wuggenig

The Government is realized by the Kunstraum of the University of Lüneburg in cooperation with the Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona, the Vienna Secession and the Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art Rotterdam.