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A Prior #16You Are Here


Anouk De Clercq

Susan Philipsz

Renzo Martens


A Prior presents issue #16 featuring Anouk De Clercq (BE), Susan Philipsz (UK) and Renzo Martens (NL), artists whose work has inspired varied reflections on collaboration.

If A Prior may be understood always to involve close collaboration with contributing artists and authors—relying on a critical proximity and dialogue—issue #16 has extended the everyday practice of collaboration to a set of historical and philosophical questions regarding collaboration and notions of ‘intense engagement’.

The artists and practices presented in this issue purposefully unsettle monographic structures; instead they wish to include a plurality of ‘voices’, stances and perspectives, both in terms of crossing artistic disciplines and in terms of crossing cultures. The challenge of ‘site sensitivity’—working with one’s surroundings, a given site or a particular situation—has encouraged feature artist, Brussels-based Anouk De Clercq, to intervene in the very lay-out of this issue. Together with A Prior’s graphic designer Jurgen Persijn, she has aimed to lay bare the structure of the printed page, the magazine’s storyline and what rests behind the written word.

De Clercq’s work also formed the starting point for reflections on: the implications of technology (by Maaike Lauwaert), the art of ‘scaping’ (by Pieter Van Bogaert), and the dynamics of artistic exchange (in a correspondence with Frederik De Preester). Collaboration and site-sensitivity is also a central feature of the contribution by Susan Philipsz, who worked with Berlin-based designer Florian Ludwig towards a song-book. The accompanying text on Philipsz’ work by Peio Aguirre focuses on the political and psycho-analytic implications of repetition and the migration of voices/songs between (physical, social, technological) bodies. The vagaries of translation and awareness of site are distinctly elaborated and politically positioned in the contribution on the work of Dutch filmmaker Renzo Martens by A Prior’s Editor-in-Chief Els Roelandt.

Martens’ stance is in turn productively juxtaposed with a major contribution by Anders Kreuger who presents extensive research underlying “The Continental Unconscious”, his exhibition about Finno-Ugric art and culture set to open in Tallinn in March of 2008. The Visions section of A Prior 16 further elaborates on the occurrences and implications of collaboration. Andrea Wiarda hears from Lou Cope about devising collaborative practice in the theatre, whereas Professor Charles Green and Anthony Gardner jointly reflect on the implications of previous artistic collaborations and develop their thoughts on ‘collaborating with the dead’. This notion is given a decidedly different inflection by Jalal Toufic who has contributed a chapter on the ‘untimely’ collaborations of Shahrazâd from his recent book: Two or Three Things I’m Dying to Tell You.

21 February 2008, 8.30pm at Beursschouwburg Brussels (August Ortsstraat 6, 1000 Brussels)
27 February 2008, 7pm at Kask, Gent (J. Kluyskensstraat 6 , 9000 Ghent)

Upcoming: apm#17_ David Maljkovic, Daniel Knorr, Kristina Norman, will be published as a part of On paper a special collaborative project between A Prior magazine and the 5th berlin biennial for contemporary art to be released on 3 April 2008.