Céline Condorelli: The Company We Keep
Exhibition: October 3, 2013 - April 1, 2014
Reception: October 3, 2013, 6:30 - 8:30 pm
Presented at Hart House, University of Toronto
Curated by Su-Ying Lee, Curator-in-Residence (2011-2012)
The Company We Keep, is an installation of twenty light bulbs, screwed into existing electrical fittings throughout Hart House, which addresses a double absence: the historical exclusion of women both from the house, and from the discourse on friendship in philosophy. The work explores friendship making reference to Hannah Arendt’s definition of culture as “the company that one chooses to keep, in the present as well as in the past”, which suggests the importance of befriending people and also ideas, issues, objects, something chosen and renewed through thinking and doing. Etched on the glass are words and colours that, depending on light conditions and time of the day, show up as shadows on walls or ceilings, in a sequence that would, if navigated and read entirely from room to room, read through a vocabulary of elective affinities, therefore inhabiting the house with the missing voices of friendship.
In addition to this site-specific installation at Hart House, Céline Condorelli will also present an exhibition titled We just came to say No at G Gallery, and an Artist’s Talk at Guelph University.
The installation and exhibition employ inanimate objects as stand-ins for the voices of the inhabitants of past, latent or forgotten circumstances. Puppets, that at once obscure the human hand and convey human stories, recount histories of injustice in Condorelli's video installation We just came to say No. In the instance of The Company We Keep, the light bulb, an essential everyday object and symbol of progress, is used to reveal the shadows of friendship. Both these works demonstrate the artist’s attentiveness to context. We just came to say No mines the political history and puppeteering tradition of Sicily while The Company We Keep is a work specially produced for Hart House, a gothic revival building with a long extracurricular history, particularly catering to the male academic.
Céline Condorelli is the author/editor of Support Structures on Sternberg Press, 2009, and one of the founding directors of Eastside Projects, an artist-run exhibition space in Birmingham, UK; she has been teaching and lecturing since 1999, and is currently Professor at NABA (Nuova Accademia di Belle Arti) Milan. Recent exhibitions includes Puppet Show, Eastside Projects, Birmingham, Things That Go Without Saying, Grazer Kunstverein, Austria, The Parliament, Archive of Disobedience, Umeå Bildmuseet, Sweden, Social Fabric, Iniva, London and Lund Konsthall, Sweden, Surrounded by the Uninhabitable, SALT Istanbul (2012) “There is nothing left”, Alexandria Contemporary Arts Forum, Townhouse, Egypt and Oslo Kunstforening (2011-12), Something Stronger than Skepticism, Alias, Krakow Photomonth (2011), Manifesta 8, Murcia (2010), Revision, part 1 and 2 (Artists Space, New York, 2009, and Cell Projects, London, 2010), Curtain Show (Eastside Projects, 2010), and Life always Escapes (Wysing Arts, Cambridge, and e-flux journal 2009).
The project is a co-production of G Gallery, University of Guelph School of Fine Art and the Justina M. Barnicke Gallery, Hart House, at the University of Toronto. This programme of activities has been coordinated by Su-Ying Lee, the Justina M. Barnicke Gallery’s past Curator-in-Residence (2012-2013).
We just came to say No
134 Ossington, entrance on Foxley Place at rear of building
September 13 – October 26, 2013
Sicilian cocktails (artist present) October 5, 2-5pm
For more information on We just came to say No, visit G Gallery's website here.
Guelph University, presented by the Faculty of Fine Art
October 7, 6pm
For more information on Céline's talk, visit Guelph University's School of Fine Arts and Music website here.