Former Futures 2
Annet Gelink Gallery proudly presents the solo exhibition Former Futures 2 of Barbara Visser (Haarlem, 1966).
Over the years Visser has conquered a firm place in the world of art, which was recently again confirmed by her being awarded the prestigious oeuvre price, the Dr. A.H. Heineken Prize for Art 2008. Her work is currently on display in the Centre d'Art Contemporain in Meymac (France) and in Gaasbeek Castle in Brussels (Belgium). Furthermore, Visser is participating in Manifesta 7 with the installation Former Futures. This year Manifesta takes place in the Trentino region in Italy. For Manifesta Visser has made a staged installation based on facts about the power struggle concerning a commission for the Palazzo delle Poste in Trento. In Former Futures Visser throws light on the correspondence between Angiolo Mazzoni, the Palazzo's architect - at the same time Mussolini's head architect - and Fortunato Depero, a futuristic artist dying to fetch in the assignment to design three enormous stained glass windows for the future building.
For Former Futures 2 Visser continues with this installation by adding a second layer. Former Futures 2 takes the installation from a concrete, physical place to a virtual, fictive place. Elements of the room in the Palazzo delle Poste return to gallery as two- or three-dimensional images in the form of photographs, slides and scale-models.
The vividly coloured foils on the windows refer to the stained glass windows of Depero. With Former Futures 2 Visser brings up for discussion the fragile relation between artist and principal -between ambition and money - eventually revolving around power. She draws therewith a parallel with our age, in which the artist still seems to be subjected to external powers. Also the tragedy of the visionary artist comes to the fore since according to Visser futurism is of all times. With Former Futures 2 Visser renders a private perspective of the phenomenon historiography. Which historic facts are considered important and passed on, and which facts stay underexposed? The human perception plays a key role in Visser's oeuvre. For example in the series of photographs A Day in Holland/Holland in a Day (2001) and Le monde appartient à ceux qui se lèvent tôt (2002) Visser is also playing with our perception and how that is being influenced by journalistic, historical and cultural influences.