Bernadette Corporation's first UK retrospective, this exhibition presents works authored by the group since their inception in the early '90s. Beginning with the organisation of parties in downtown New York, their mock incorporation and ambiguous branding strategies developed between 1995 and 1997 into a women’s fashion line, engaging in quotation, provocation, hoaxes, and anti-artistic postures of crass commercialism.
Between 1999 and 2001 Bernadette Corporation turned to publishing, releasing three issues of the magazine Made in USA, and spread itself across its pages in a polyvalent mode, reminiscent of Stephan Mallarmé’s self- published La Dernière Mode. Get Rid of Yourself (2003) followed, a film which revolves around the rioting and Black Bloc anarchists in Genoa during the 2001 G8 summit, along with scripted passages featuring Chloe Sevigny. In 2004 BC produced the novel Reena Spaulings, in which a “whatever” subjectivity was enacted by fusing up to 50 unnamed authors. The narrative is centered on the eponymous character – a twenty-something museum guard turned model/muse in her post-9/11 New York life.
Bernadette Corporation’s Pedestrian Cinema project in 2006 resulted in the “discovery” that cinema was dead. Subsequently, Bernadette Corporation hid the corpse through a rush of ephemera that made its way into galleries in lieu of films. Their deceptive use of the gallery space continued with The Complete Poem (Greene Naftali, New York, 2009), A Haven for the Soul (Galerie Neu, Berlin, 2010), and Stone Soup (Galerie Meyer Kainer, Vienna, 2011), exhibitions which lyrically and conceptually underscore the persistent “reality” of Bernadette Corporation both as a group of relationships, and as brand.
An Artists Space, New York exhibition, in co-production with Institute of Contemporary Arts, London