Artes Mundi 2010
I visited the Artes Mundi 2010 exhibition at the National Museum of Wales – as stimulating and sporadically poignant as ever. The broad theme appears to be the shifting ground of national identity, although whether this reflects the current preoccupations of the art-making community worldwide or the need for the prize’s curators to demonstrate its relevance to Wales is unclear. There’s a lot of defamiliarisation going on, prompting us to contemplate exoticised representations of the mundane - historical leaflets, factories, museums themselves. In terms of ideas, the most intriguing works, to me at least, are Yael Bartana’s videos promoting (semi-seriously?) the idea of mass Jewish immigration to Poland – plus you get free posters, which is always good. Aesthetically, Adrian Paci’s short film “Per Speculum” is particularly striking. But it’s all well worth a look.