Piled out of The Old Hairdresser’s and onto the sleeper to this symposium at the Whitechapel a couple of weeks ago. Sadie Plant argued for a feminist web of roads, cars veering off in all directions (no superhighway thanks Nam), Julian Oliver wowed the crowd by writing code during his presentation (and scared us all with our electronic visibility) and Erica Balsam was excellent on Harun Farocki’s ‘Parallel I-IV’.
How I managed to be in the show for 6 hours and miss Frances Stark’s work is beyond me, the pale, etc. Anyway, the show confirmed for me the virtual impossibility of work to engage successfully with contemporary transmission when not made of the digital stuff. But also how terrible web-based work comes across in the (Buren alert) the calcifying, ossifying gallery space. Superfrumpy in the 90s. Oh but there were real highlights, old and new: Judith Barry, Harun Farocki, Kaprow’s Hello, Lynn Hershman Leeson, Camille Henrot bien sur, whoever made the big bum photograph cut out… and the catalogue is great.