Versus Art Project announces the opening of the first solo exhibition “Pleased to announce…” by @freeze_magazine artist Cem A., in Istanbul, Turkey. The exhibition presents a critique of standardised language utilised by art institutions to write academically sound yet slightly incomprehensible exhibition texts.
In the framework of “Pleased to announce…”, Cem A. invites the visitor to question the nature of the language utilised by art organisations to describe exhibitions and artworks to the public in supposedly inclusive, informative and accessible ways. A selection of “real” and fictional exhibition texts and memes created by the artist will be exhibited in the traditional white cube gallery space, giving the latter a subtle double function of an archival reading room.
To present a collective critique of standardised institutional-grade language, the artist has invited working people in the arts specialised in curation, PR and communications to draft an exhibition text of their own under a unified prompt: to write a text generic enough to describe any contemporary art exhibition devoid of context and location. The resulting texts aim to challenge often unquestioned credibility asserted through a disguise of complex language. Visitors are encouraged to speculate and assess which texts in the exhibition belong to legitimate arts organisations and which have been ironically written for the purposes of the exhibition.
The exhibition is proud to showcase a safe space for uninhibited thought, through the radical detachment of preconceived strains of knowledge and non-consensual memento mori. Plutonian themes of mortem and virginity are highlighted as main constituents to reincarnated material and physical life, imploring us to safeguard tertiary ego progressions as biblical testaments of veridical subjective manifestation. Following the steps taken by historical radicals and triumphant luminaries, the artists vouch to devote their careers towards the active contention of imperfect perfection in attempts to redefine future socio-political and environmental archives.*
Cem A. is an artist and curator with a background in anthropology. He is known for running the art meme page @freeze_magazine. Since its inception in 2019, @freeze_magazine has become a tool for creative collaborations between Cem and fellow artists, researchers and organisations. His work has been featured in The New York Times, The Art Newspaper and Monopol Magazin. Selected exhibitions include documenta fifteen, Kassel (2022) and solo exhibitions Hope You See Me as a Friend at Barbican Centre, London (2022) and The Party at Weserhalle, Berlin (2021). He has held lectures at HeK- Haus der Elektronischen Künste, Basel; Universität der Künste, Berlin; Royal College of Art; Sotheby’s Institute of Art, Central Saint Martins; and Barbican Centre, London.
* Please ignore this paragraph.