Saturday, December 06, 2008

Documental as Anything

It was announced earlier in the week that
Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev has been appointed curator of Documenta 13, to be held in Kassel, Germany in 2012. Most recently Christov-Bakargiev's claim to fame is curating the recent Biennale of Sydney, which according to MCA director Elizabeth Ann Macgregor (as quoted in the Sydney Morning Herald), helped the curator bag the prestigious job. In particular, Christov-Bakargiev's "bold use" of Cockatoo Island as a venue assured her the job. Macgregor was part of a nine-member international committee that selected Christov-Bakargiev.

Documenta is probably the most esteemed contemporary art event in the world. What The Artswipe finds so flabbergasting is the self-importance placed on such extravaganzas. What's with the nine member committee? Is this the United Nations or something? One of the problems with the artworld these days is how over-determined everything has to be. Because we all know that no matter how much importance is placed on who the curator is, or which artists the curator selects, we'll whinge about the show because, well, we weren't included! The Artswipe is hedging bets that whatever Australian artists are selected, they'll be drawn from the pool of Australian artists already represented in the recent Biennale: Shaun Gladwell, TV Moore, Mike Parr, Raquel Ormella, Tracey Moffatt, Vernon Ah Kee... take your pick. Or get together a group of nine artist friends and take your collective committee styled pick. Either that or dream of the day when the artworld holds Idol style auditions or Big Brother style evictions for these spectacularised international art events, because I know Paula Abdul would be The Artswipe's pick for curator.