Status Quo. We wanted to paint the walls
pink and blue and have a golf buggy in the
gallery but all we got was this white cube
BANK solo show
Galerie Neu, Berlin
03 February – 09 April 2022
alerie Neu is pleased to exhibit #BANK's original Fax-Baks in it's most comprehensive presentation to date: "Status Quo: We wanted to paint the walls pink and blue and have a golf buggy in the gallery but all we got was this white cube graveyard” February 3 - March 5, 2022 "Press releases are genuinely fascinating documents. They’re usually unsigned, which is perhaps why they’re so often absurdly pompous. But the really interesting thing is, who are they for? Rich collectors, who must be presumed to be stupid and talked to like children? Other gallerists, to show them that they read the backs of theory books too? Artists? Students? Just who is being addressed by these things? The endless nonsense they contained meant that we could be brutally honest about their conceits, assumptions and errors to the point of outright rudeness, under the none-too-convincing cover of offering free advice as to improvements. There was also a hopefully infuriating holier-than-thou tone to the whole project, and a hypocritical undercurrent." (1) The exhibition succeeds the publication of The BANK Fax-Bak Service (2) , cataloguing their inexhaustible practice of correcting and annotating press releases to then returning these via fax. BANK was formed in 1991 by #SimonBedwell, #JohnRussell and #DemoDemosthenous following the group exhibition BANK …other manifestations that the group of artists organised between 1991 and 1999 in various formations, with #MillyThompson, Simon Bedwell and John Russell at its core, both at #GalleriePooPoo between 1996 and 1999 and in various spaces in London prior to that, were formulated as installed scenarios or tableaux. These served as a critique of dominant positions of current art practice then typified by the reception of the young British artist and demonstrated the critically aggressive, irreverent and satirical nature of their activity, which was aimed directly at the mainstream contemporary art scene. (1) Bank, Black Dog Publishing Ltd, 2000 (2) The BANK Fax-Bak Service, Edited by Tenzing Barshee, Gallien Déjean and Dan Solbach Co-published by Lenz, Treize, Galerie Neu, and Kunsthalle Zürich, 2021
𝘞𝘦 𝘸𝘢𝘯𝘵𝘦𝘥 𝘵𝘰 𝘱𝘢𝘪𝘯𝘵 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘸𝘢𝘭𝘭𝘴 𝘱𝘪𝘯𝘬 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘣𝘭𝘶𝘦 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘩𝘢𝘷𝘦 𝘢 𝘨𝘰𝘭𝘧 𝘣𝘶𝘨𝘨𝘺 𝘪𝘯 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘨𝘢𝘭𝘭𝘦𝘳𝘺 𝘣𝘶𝘵 𝘢𝘭𝘭 𝘸𝘦 𝘨𝘰𝘵 𝘸𝘢𝘴 𝘵𝘩𝘪𝘴 𝘸𝘩𝘪𝘵𝘦 𝘤𝘶𝘣𝘦 𝘨𝘳𝘢𝘷𝘦𝘺𝘢𝘳𝘥
on view through March 5th, 2022 @galerieneu Berlin
“….Taking on the unsolicited role of a service provider specializing in helping the institutions of the art market, BANK systematically pointed out the press release’s conceptual jargon, its historical approximations, fashionable but meaningless phrasing, and the typographical, syntactical and grammatical errors these incurred. In doing so, BANK undertook a thorough critical questioning of the literary and theoretical format of cultural mediation.
The exhibition at Galerie Neu follows the publication of The BANK Fax-Bak Service (Edited by #TenzingBarshee, #GallienDéjean and #DanSolbach Co-published by Lenz, Treize, Kunsthalle Zürich and Galerie Neu), which catalogues their inexhaustible practice of correcting and annotating press releases and then faxing these back to the very institutions disseminating them: From national venues and publicly-run galleries to commercial galleries and artist-run spaces.
BANK was formed in 1991 from a series of encounters between a group of young art school graduates following the group exhibition BANK they had organised in a disused bank build- ing in London. With #MillyThompson, #SimonBedwell and #JohnRussell at its core, their respective studios were occasionally transformed into galleries which played host to numerous group exhibitions, the collaborative practice of the group increasingly subsuming the works of the artists invited for the occasion, allowing for a decade of joyous curatorial experimentation. These installed scenarios served predominantly as a critique of dominant positions of current art practice then typified by the reception of the Young British Artist(s) and demonstrated the critically aggressive, irreverent and satirical nature of their activity, albeit without taking sides. BANK’s applied modus operandi, happily expressed their dismissive attitude against everyone and everything.”