Sideways Movement and Other Attempts on the Boundary

13 November 2019 – 4 January 2020

Return Gallery – Goethe Institut Irland

Featuring Harun Farocki, with new work by Marian Balfe, Eimear Murphy, Rachel Lavelle, and Conor O’Sullivan.

Amidst today’s interconnected contexts and immaterial exchanges, there seems to be an increasing fixation on geographic boundaries and material markers of regional and national domain. The upcoming exhibition in the Goethe-Institut Irland, curated by Nathan Cahill, aims to unsettle old, romantic narratives about physical borders, and advocates instead for an expansion of the playful domain.

Harun Farocki’s video piece Parallel II (2014) is at the centre of the exhibition. Part two of a four part series on the subject of videogames, Parallel II is a meditation on the boundaries of game environments. Farocki considers how player avatars interact with the essentially immaterial borders to the domain of play, through a series of interactions between player avatars and boundary zones. The piece highlights sideways movement as a dominant affordance when players attempt to transcend the boundaries of the game environment.

For the exhibition in the Goethe-Institut, Cahill invited four artists to respond to Farocki’s video. Each new work comprises a tentative zone of questioning, using a variety of media to undo and remake our communal relationships to space, identity and regionality.

Sideways Movement and Other Attempts on the Boundary is part of Common Denominator, a two-year programme in the Goethe-Institut’s Return Gallery curated by Art in the Contemporary World MA/MFA students. Through exhibitions, seminars, discussions and more, it interrogates what it means to speak of political solidarity, civic standards or even aesthetic values. Common Denominator is supported by the Goethe-Institut Irland in collaboration with the National College of Art & Design

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