Urban Networks

Urban Networks

Venue: Courtauld Institute, London
Date: 1st November 2003

Franko B, Keith Bates, Sophie Beard, Eva Bensasson, Mel Bochner, Leigh Bowery, Jeremy Deller, Clancy Gebler Davis, Valeria Graziano, Fergus Greer, Tom Ellis, Zarah Hunt, Zoe Irvine, Melanie Jackson, Manali Jagtap, Isaac Julien, Michael Landy, Ryan S Lemke, Piers Lockwood, Melanie Manchot, Fabian Monheim, Genesis P-Orridge, Magdalena Pederin, Colin Ray, Martha Rosler, Frances Scott, John Sheehy, Yinka Shonibare, Allyson Waller, Michael Wesley, Wrights and Sites, Catherine Yass.

Urban Networks was an exhibition that charted the city as a social and physical experience. The work was grouped under four categories of encounter:

Routes explored how we convey ourselves through the urban space.

Sites examined the personality that is assumed by concrete structures in a city landscape.

Groups was a series of works that conflated identity through collective and synchronised creativity.

Positions surveyed more subjective readings of the urban experience.

Within the website each category was coupled with a spotlight text. Toby Litt was commissioned to write a short story, Genesis P-Orridge gave an interview, Sue Walker wrote on the contemporary practise of homeless artists, whilst Lucy Bradnock meditated on memory and migration.

Many of the pieces in the show were selected in respect to their awareness of the writing of history, such as Isaac Julien's Undressing Icons, which searches for forgotten history in the gay community of the Harlem Renaissance.

Hidden within the exhibition were chains of communication and friendship that were forged in organising and facilitating the show. The collection was picked out by a shifting group of about twelve people who sat and talked about art and the logistics of hanging an exhibition every Tuesday for around seven months; each voice that entered the arena has contributed to the collection and influenced the way we think about it.

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