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An Idea Just Out of Reach

An audio CD of original interviews with the artist
Published by Brigade Commerz, May 2009
Audio-CD: 51:00 min

"I don't have to know how to do a baby's hands or a bleeding guy nailed to a piece of wood. I don't need to know about any of this stuff. I can do mirror cubes. And that's it. What a great idea…all I have to do is make sure they are interesting." There is a democratising impulse in Robert Morris' mirrored cubes. Liam Gillick's work, however, is not a mirror of anything, but an attempt to look around the mirror. The key to this is the quality of interest and this often has to do with questions about the nature of art in relation to society or how society produces artists. Liam Gillick is not just one of "those monkeys that can play the piano", he knows that you get this effect of interest when you project an idea just out of reach. "You are floating in the middle of the sea on a piece of wood and you see another piece of wood or another object floating and you think maybe I should move from this piece of wood to that piece of wood it looks good and it's floating. But the only way you can do it would be to leave behind the one that you know floats."

Liam Gillick had to promise his grandfather never to work in a coalmine. When the promise might have become true, there weren't coalmines in Great Britain any more. In the meantime Gillick is one of the most successful artists of his generation but this irredeemable promise of his grandfather left its marks. Is emancipation one of the promises of modernity, irredeemable too? Do we shift from production to post production? How do we produce artists? Driven by such questions, Gillick works as artist, designer, curator and critic. All together is the work, critics may say: "We like your painted metal works a lot, but what about the shitty rest and the silly books. Why don't you get rid of them? The others say: "Your work is great, but could you stop making art." Gillick needs this productive paradox, without this only a "dictatorial maniac" would be left, an egotist who would be a nightmare to us all.

One day after his programmatic Berlin statement in the overcrowded Hamburger Bahnhof Liam Gillick answered in a nearly intimate interview - aside the turbulences around "the Brit, who was surprisingly nominated to represent Germany at the Venice Biennale in the German pavilion" concerning questions about his person and approach. A vividly Audio CD resulted from the recordings of the lecture and the interview. The alternation between private and public person triggers an intense suspense. When it seems possible to pin down Gillick explicitely, he cleverly withdraws to open up a new facet of his parallel thinking.

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UK: £1.65
Europe: £2.55
Rest of World: £3.25

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