Touring Club

October 1994 to February 1995

Project with Christian Philipp Müller

In cooperation with Kunsthalle Fri-Art, Fribourg (Switzerland)

Christian Philipp Müller’s exhibition “Touring Club” shows his personal evaluation of a trip through Switzerland. On it, the New York-based, Swiss-born artist visited the 60 art institutions in his home country that exhibit contemporary art at least once a year. He translated the impressions and information he gathered there into pictorial sections. They illustrate different perspectives of the institutional landscape in which Switzerland’s contemporary art scene is embedded. In its title, the exhibition alludes to the name of the official Swiss automobile club. It is itself part of a project conceived as a tour that began at Kunsthalle FRIART in Fribourg and continued at the Swiss Institute in New York. Developed further at each stage, the project takes on a different face depending on the conditions found at the exhibition sites.

The Lüneburg installation is composed of six sections: The large-scale projection of the video “Tour de Suisse. Sketch for a Road Movie” documents Müller’s 1l-day journey to the 60 Swiss art institutions. A map indicates the location of these institutions, at the same time noting their founding dates and assigning them to the respective Swiss language regions by means of colored markings. Boxes mounted on the wall show the responses to a survey concerning the activities and modalities of the institutions surveyed. Video prints show those of the curators and directors of the visited exhibition venues who agreed to be interviewed on camera. The videotapes of the interviews themselves can be viewed at a work table, which also contains material on the project’s two previous stops in Fribourg and New York, as well as related works by the artist. On the “Role Play” shelf, hats are ready, colorfully printed with the terms ARTIST, CRITIC, CONTRACTOR, INTERMEDIARY, PROMOTER, COLLECTOR AND DEALER.