Talk of the Nation
On May 10, MAP’s traveling exhibition No Country: Contemporary Art for South and Southeast Asia opens at its final venue, Singapore’s Centre for Contemporary Art (CCA), a national research center of the Nanyang Technological University (NTU). Curated by June Yap, No Country features recent mixed-media works, paintings, photographs, sculptures, and videos by 16 artists and collectives from countries including Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, the United Kingdom, and Vietnam. Among the participating artists are Tang Da Wu, The Otolith Group, and Sopheap Pich, whose work Morning Glory will be on view for the first time as part of the MAP initiative. Four themes underscore the exhibition: reflection and encounter, intersections and dualities, diversities and divisions, and the desire for unity and community. As a whole, No Country examines the often-paradoxical status of contemporary nationhood, and in so doing, proposes a reevaluation of the region and its countries. As Yap notes, “The intention is to present the range of aesthetic developments and subjects of interest to contemporary artists, and to challenge the privileging of nation and national narrative as a basis for understanding them.”
What constitutes community in the present day? Inspired by MAP’s forthcoming exhibition of contemporary art from Latin America, “Come Together,” the latest edition of Guggenheim Forum—an ongoing series of moderated online discussions centered around art and design—will delve into historical and contemporary definitions and manifestations of community, and investigate the creation of utopian and other experimental models in the physical, cultural, intellectual, and digital realms. Between April 7 and 11, join moderator Daniel Tucker (above) and participants Lauren Groff, Pablo Helguera, Stevphen Shukaitis for this in-depth, online conversation. And don’t miss the live chat between Tucker and Helguera on Thursday, April 10 from 2:00 to 3:00 pm EST.
MAP Makes Headlines
Over the past few months, MAP’s artists and activities have been garnering media attention from a variety of sources. In their overview of the recent Dhaka Art Summit, Artforum praised MAP artist Shilpa Gupta’s installation “highlighting daily challenges faced by residents of enclaves on either side of the India-Bangladesh border,” calling it, “powerful and provocative.” ArtNexus featured Pablo León de la Barra, MAP’s curator for Latin America, and pointed to the “importance of his initiative.” And on the Guggenheim’s blog, Checklist, conservator Joanna Phillips shared insights on inspecting and documenting MAP’s many works of time-based media: “Working with artworks and artists from Singapore, Cambodia, Vietnam, Malaysia, and other Asian countries I haven’t been involved with before has been truly enriching for me.”
On Our Radar
- Visit the Singapore Art Museum through April 27 to see Not Against Interpretation: Untitled, an exhibition featuring work from a range of contemporary Singapore-based artists. Those viewing the exhibition are encouraged to write down title suggestions for the untitled works.
- Come hear Pablo León de la Barra speak with Brazilian curator Adriano Pedrosa on April 4 as part of the “Dialogues” program at SP-Arte, São Paulo’s international art fair.
- On April 9, MAP artist Araya Rasdjarmrearnsook delivers a lecture at the Denver Art Museum that coincides with her solo exhibition in the museum’s Fuse Box space, which is dedicated to installation and time-based works.