Curated by Rebecca Strain and Sandra Jogeva
Polymer Culture Factory, Tallinn
24th August – 2nd September 2012
The title of this exhibition is a subversion of the use of sex lives of the rich and famous to sell newspapers and magazines.
Rightly or wrongly we have become accustomed to the private lives of celebrities being shared as daily news. Now it also seems that even those who make an attempt to retain a private life have intimate details of their lives exposed in public. The question posed by the curators is; are artists were willing to expose the privacy of those whose lives are perhaps at present outside of the daily news in the name of art.
Selected artists based in Estonia and the UK, were invited to respond to the title Sex Lives of the Poor and Unknown. In return they would be furnished with a single unique hand-made sheet of paper to make their mark; defining the interdependent relationship between artist, creative space and curtator.
Paper was handmade from abaca fibres and old rope in Tallinn and the UK by the co-curator Rebecca Strain. The fibres were chosen as they produce a lightweight but strong paper that would survive in transit between countries. An attempt was made to make the largest sheets of paper possible to reflect the spacious environment of an industrial exhibition space; in contrast with the limitations of the hand-made product.
In Estonia Marko Maetamm, Soho Fond, Remo Randver, Katrin Pille, Meeland Sepp, Mari Prekup and in the the UK Driton Selmani, Larna Campbell, Michael Griffiths, Christopher Fraser and Hiroko Matsushita were invited to participate and accepted the invitation.
The paper was distributed and collected by Sandra Jogeva in Tallinn and Rebecca Strain in the UK. In a tragic incident the work of Driton Selmani, whose drawings theme dealt with the unknown, mysteriously vanished from storage so that the image and its whereabouts is presently unknown. Days before the show Tallinn based US artist Ernest Truely suggested he ‘ never felt more poor or obscure in my life’ and on agreement of the curators, a thirteenth hour contribution was made.
The resulting drawings were exhibited Polymer Culture Factory, Tallinn, Estonia. Sandra Jogeva installed one of her serving lady sculptures which served as a banquet table for a feast of the common aphrodisiac; popcorn and Champagne; poured by the visitors into a collection of glasses of unknown ownership. The exhibition formed the opening of the annual Polymer Festival and was warmly attended by invited guests