rrespektiv” is a European co-production that brings together museums and art institutions from Belgium, the United Kingdom, France and Italy. The title, a parody of the term “retrospective”, immediately expresses the tone of the exhibition and suggests its political and provocative stance. Geers was in the front line of the struggle against the folly of apartheid, and even modified his date of birth to make it coincide with May 1968, in reference to the May in France that gives meaning to the artist’s political and social commitment.
With his works, Kendell Geers explores the geographic, linguistic, political, social, sexual and psychological limits and borders of man.
The artist claims there is a need to take a stance with respect to the world in which we live. From this critical viewpoint – which avoids any Manichaean vision of reality – emerges a committed art that totally involves the artist at a personal level and draws the public into the work itself, making it in every way an element of the artistic creation. The reactions and emotions themselves of the visitor, his sense of astonishment, attraction or rejection, are an integral part of Kendell Geers’s works.
At the Mart, the visitor will be able experience all this for himself starting with the work introducing the exhibition, The “POSTPUNKPAGANPOP” installation (2008), an absolute first for Italy, consists of a labyrinth surrounded by a special barbed wire invented by the South African police to injure more than the standard form of barbed wire. One is not limited to “admiring” the work; one has to interact with it: the visitor has to choose which way to go. The “labyrinth” has two different exits: one leads to the rest of the exhibition; the other leads out, towards the reassuring context of the Mart’s permanent collection.
Curated by Warren Siebrits, Jérôme Sans, Paulo Herkenhoff, Christine Macel, Rudi Laermans and Liveven de Cauter.