Mark Dion "Natural History and Other…

Mark Dion "Natural History and Other Fictions"

de Appel, Nieuwe Spiegelstraat 10, Amsterdam

The exhibition Natural History and Other Fictions is the first major overview of the work of Mark Dion and is a co-production of the Ikon Gallery,Birmingham, Kunstverein Hamburg and De Appel Foundation. Especially for De Appel, and in cooperation with the Zoological Museum of the University of Amsterdam, Dion presents an installation that features the Quagga, an animal from the zebra family. This unique stuffed specimen a member of a species that became extinct in Amsterdam's Artis Zoo in 1883, will be placed in a showcase with its extreme vulnerability on display. Mark Dion's complex installations primarily point to the world of biology and taxonomy (the study and classification of living organisms and their systems), but they also allude to popular misconceptions and ecological interests. Diversity is not only a theme in his work, but it also describes it. As an artist, he investigates the history and the extremes of scientific knowledge, and in doing so he makes temporary role choices -that of biologist, discoverer or activist - combining concepts and categories in a metaphorical way. His works bears such titles as M. Cuvier "Discovers" Extinction, The Delirium of Alfred Russel Wallace or A Yard of Jungle, Artful History: A Restoration Comedy. Through the use of texts, objects and sound, he transforms the white exhibition room into a section of a natural history museum, a professor's laboratory or an archaeological excavation site. The 'displacements' that are hereby produced not only explore the meaning of a new context but at the same time create space for a critical and ironic look at such concepts as 'collecting' and 'studying'.’ (Press release De Appel) Catalogue; Mark Dion. Natural History and other Fictions, 1997. De Appel, Kunstverein Hamburg, Ikon Gallery Birmingham. Text: John Leslie, Jasie Simon, Saskia Bos, Jackie McCallister, Simon Morrissey, Helen Molesworth, Erhard Schüppelz, Miwon Kwon, Carolyn Christov- Bakargiev and Mark Dion. English. 80 pp. 17 f.c., 17 b.w.. 21 x 28.5 cm. Soft cover. Design Z3 Associates. ISBN 90 7594 52 2. € 15,-.

Mark Dion – Natural History and Other Fictions

affiche, 1997

See also