If.... Samuel Hasler: Block

4 - 22 May 2010

Utilising the experimental freedom the If…. season offers to artists and curators, Samuel Hasler will adopt a new working habitat within g39, producing an evolving exhibition and accompanying performance. A large square blackboard, an object evident within Samuel’s drawings for some time, hangs in the centre of the gallery’s front window, impeding a clear view into the space. Using this ‘block’, Hasler comments on censorship, access, borders and obstructions within visual culture.

The exhibit begins with a marathon 48-hour performance work during which Samuel works with a limited range of materials and props including planks, specially printed posters and lighting, leading to a gradual construction of works within the space. His actions responding to both the city and his unique solitary position, methodically following a thematic score:

0 LANDSCAPE Begin. Flow of materials. Transforming the white cube.
6 LANDSCAPE Journey. Drawing.
12 LANDSCAPE Patterns.
18 GOD Patterns.
24 GOD New Emptiness. Darkness. Lightness.
30 GOD OMG (why nothing means Nothing )
36 ARCHITECTURE New Build. City. Something Out Of Nothing.
42 ARCHITECTURE Furniture. Visit Wales.
47 ARCHITECTURE End To Solitude. Speaking To People.
48 WORDS End.

Often alluding to issues of restriction and admittance, Samuel’s work for If…. has been directly inspired by a video by Mark Wallinger entitled Via Dolorosa 2002. In this work Wallinger presented the passion scene from the film ‘Jesus of Nazareth’, with a large black square at the centre of the screen, the only visible part the outer couple of inches of the screen and the core action almost always obscured. Such systems of blocking access, or restricting access to the work has been an often-successful tool for Samuel in order to create a sense of strangeness and otherness within a space.

This show was selected by
  • Michael Cousin