EVA International – Ireland’s Biennial
12 April – 6 July 2014
Curator: Bassam El Baroni
EVA International 2014 curated by Bassam El Baroni is entitled AGITATIONISM and features works by 55 Irish and international artists, selected from over 2000 proposals by artists in 96 countries.
In the past few years we have witnessed protests unfolding into serious unrest across many parts of the world. After initial excitement at this new global wave of voicing political demands, seasons change, and what was a novelty becomes a norm that lures many of us into the trap of trying to determine and define this previously undetermined phenomenon. Such engagements with current political upheavals can be termed agitations, an old philosophical term which denotes the extreme tension of the brain in its attempt to determine something perceived as previously undetermined – such as a sublime experience of nature. These agitations usually recast the sense of the human self accompanying all thinking into a clearly distinguishable entity, treating it as if it were something we could claim to really understand.
Agitationism, on the one hand, is the condition of living under a constant flow of agitations, including the ones that you inevitably sometimes produce yourself. However, it is also the process of ‘working through’ them with the aim of seeking adaptation to a logic situated somewhere else beyond the entrapment between past, present, and future – three tenses that overlap in the contemporary moment creating a kind of palimpsest of half undone histories, half imagined futures, and a present of phantasms as a consequence.
EVA 2014 AGITATIONISM simulates the sense of living under agitation while capturing how we are slowly adapting to a different perception of the world by working through our relationships with historical ideologies, post-colonial narratives, other beings (including animals), and speculations about the not-so-distant future. The notion of AGITATIONISM is activated throughout by Garrett Phelan’s project …THAT TENSE EXPECTATION… an intervention into the identity output associated with EVA 2014, from branding and advertising, to merchandise and a series of slogans in public space around the city. …THAT TENSE EXPECTATION… reflects the confusion and disjuncture within systems of conviction and principles – unknown spaces or entities. It represents both certainty and true irrationality or perhaps ultimately the energy used when trying to rationalize the impossible.
Bisan Abu-Eisheh, Doa Aly, Kjersti Andvig, Martí Anson, Amanda Beech, Ann Böttcher, Jenny Brady, Benjamin de Búrca, +billion- (James Merrigan), Luis Camnitzer, Chimurenga, Jacqueline Doyen, Tom Flanagan & Megs Morley, Zachary Formwalt, GRRRR (Ingo Giezendanner), Nilbar Güreş, Iswanto Hartono & Raqs Media Collective, Rana Hamadeh, Siobhán Hapaska, Nicoline van Harskamp, Cécile Hartmann, Malak Helmy, David Horvitz, Luis Jacob, Jeffrey Charles Henry Peacock, Ramon Kassam, Patrick Jolley, Hassan Khan, Per–Oskar Leu, Alon Levin, Sophie Loscher, Mona Marzouk, Pauline M’barek, Asier Mendizabal, Metahaven, Nastio Mosquito, Catalina Niculescu, Seamus Nolan, Mark O’Kelly, Uriel Orlow, Neša Paripović, Michael Patterson-Carver, Garrett Phelan, Elizabeth Price, Eva Richardson McCrea, Walid Sadek, Miri Segal, Ann-Sofi Sidén, Praneet Soi, Paul Tarpey, Stefanos Tsivopoulos, Humberto Vélez, Carla Zaccagnini
Image: Garrett Phelan, A MOMENT OF THREAT (2014) Assorted pens, Indian ink, Tippex on paper, 21 x 29.7 cm. Courtesy the artist / EVA International