Barcelona is a Mediterranean city with a mild climate. August, being generally a hot and humid month. Despite the fact that not everybody can go on holiday for the whole month, we are still a country that shuts down for the whole of August. And rests. Preparing for the start of a new season. This year many will be lying on the beach or on a terrace in the mountains with their homework done. Or at least they will have thought about it. That’s what we hope. As while the year is drawing to a close everything is still up in the air. What will happen to the Canodrom? To the Capella? To the Virreina? And to Macba? The Catalan minister for culture, Ferran Mascarell, announced at the beginning of July that there would be changes, that he was thinking about how to organise the whole context. While Jaume Ciurana, deputy mayor at the town hall in Barcelona, in an interview in El Pais and La Vanguardia placed Macba at the centre of all the decisions. Ciurana and Mascarell seem to be in agreement that the museum should mark the institutional discourse of the city, that it be important. The fact is that Barcelona can’t continue in stand-by. A few weeks ago we published a letter from the association of independent galleries of Catalonia (GIC) that quite rightly denounced the stalemate. And yes, they were right, curators, critics and artists run the risk of not finding outlets, of not being able to develop projects. Others also don’t have it easy. Whatever the situation, one has to press “ON”, once and for all.
For the time being to pass the time in August we leave you with four articles. One by Pilar Bonet that looks at the exhibition "La cuestión del paradigma" (The question of the paradigm) at the Panera in Lleida and another by Maite Garbayo Maeztu looking at the Àngels Ribé exhibition at Macba in Barcelona. On the other hand, Syd Krochmalny talks about the political complexities of the United States in relation to the work “Do You Have Time?” by Judi Werthein with Tomás Espina at the Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum in Connecticut and Marina Vives reflects on the state-nations present in the Venice Biennale.
With all the difficulties and dangers surrounding a curatorial project that explores the diffuse panorama of emerging art in our country, the exhibition presented by Manuel Segade at the Panera in Lleida is a singular exercise in cartography that lends itself to various readings and comments. Neither an official statement nor a promotional edition, the show is a critical outline that allows us to continue to think about the question of the paradigm.
Bit by bit MACBA is slowly revising the work of artists linked to what has been called Catalan conceptualism. Now it is the turn of Àngels Ribé. An artist surrounded by a certain mythical aura for the little known about her. The revision of artistic practices in the seventies seems necessary once more, given their actuality and as it makes it possible to establish parallels between artists from different latitudes.
“Do you have time?” gives a voice to those who usually don’t have one. Segregated in the streets and flattened by the conditions of late capitalism, they don’t generally enter museums or even give their opinion. A homeless David Kleinman relates his own vision of the history of the USA. A revision that is immediately labelled Marxist. Especially when it comes from an Argentine artist who dares to talk about the USA.
The distribution according to country, of part of the exhibition space at the Venice Biennale, is the origin for a political reflection on the mythical Biennale. The title that binds this edition together also begs another consideration: which “nations” are the ones that illuminate this Biennale?