Untitled Armenia

  • Shaun Stamp (UK) and Ajke Lutkemoller (The Netherlands)

    multimedia installation (kinetic sculpture, video works: ‘Around 3am 2010. Another building’ and ‘Somewhere around 4 am 2010’)

    Department of Fine Arts, AOU (Armenian Open University), Yerevan
    November 1-5, 2010

As a conceptual point of departure, this project was guided by an artistic curiosity to turn Armenia into a Project by viewing it as a Subject in the first place.

Equipped with a curiosity about the general socio-political climate of moods and dispositions in today’s Armenia, the project is an engagement with the ideology formation strategies across those structures, and with the relationship thereby that, by virtue of certain discursive economies, obtains between subjectivities and preconceptions. A portfolio of issues that the project seeks to articulate by making recourse into the philosophical writings of Vilem Flusser.

As part of a broader project ‘Two Minds Better than One’ implemented by Shaun Stamp and Ajke Lutkemoller, the exhibition positions itself in-between the faults of preconceived humanistic ideas; and by approaching them through some of Flusser’s philosophies, it is also seeking insights about progression in the mechanics of Technology, and that of Identity. As such, the end-product – through its use and reflection of mixed media – is a transmutation of the socio-political-geographical structures of Armenia into a piece of art.

In the process of making the work, the choice of the material the artists made was guided by chance and intuition. For to make their own Kinetic Sculpture, the artists make use of objects like wheels or cassette tapes, they discovered along their way at venues as diverse as streets, highways, train tracks, trash heaps. The presented work – which is a reflection on the question of the Other in the light of Flusser’s understandings of identity and difference – is a series of videos: ‘Around 3 am 2010. Another building’ and ‘Somewhere around 4 am 2010’.

Flusser argues that modern societies are in flux, with [cultures] being challenged by global circulatory networks and a growth in visual stimulation. He posits that these changes will radically alter the ways cultures define themselves and deal with each other. Not just theories of globalization, however, Flusser’s ideas about communication and identity have their roots in concepts of […] self-determination and realization through the recognition of the Other. Flusser’s theories provide a theoretical framework within which the artists – mostly guided by intuition than anything else – are seeking to pave their own way into accessing the question of the Other.

The exhibition is organized by ACSL and the Department of Fine Arts, AOU.