exhibition
2000
Ulay "Performing Light"

Ulay "Performing Light"

09.09–22.10.2000
de Appel, Nieuwe Spiegelstraat 10, Amsterdam

‘Up until now, the work of Ulay has been fairly unfamiliar to the public at large. With Performing light, a presentation of Ulay's exceptionally multifaceted oeuvre, De Appel intends to change all that. A number of the exhibition rooms will be transformed into living and productive laboratories. The presentation will keep changing throughout the course of the exhibition as guest curators present new selections (and interpretations) of the artist's archive, now present at De Appel. A series of parallel events will be taking place at the same time, with performances by Ulay (some with other artists), the unveiling and presentation of parts of his own archive, special events on the theme of photography, discussions with guests, and presentations of projects carried out in the city itself, such as a series of Polaroid portraits of inhabitants of De Pijp, a district of Amsterdam in which about 60 different nationalities are represented. The latest developments will be reported on the web site of De Appel: www.deappel.nl. Since 1975, De Appel has been introducing new artistic media to the Netherlands such as photography projects, performances and video installations. Ulay has been involved in these activities from the beginning. At the same time he and Marina Abramovic built a reputation with relational works (1976-1988) in which they shared their nomadic - artistic existence with the public. But Ulay's oeuvre also includes documents of private performances. large collection of travel photographs, and, more recently, intriguing photographic experiments with photograms and 'photogenes' (physiological afterimages made visible) and new collaborative projects. When asked whether he prefers either performance or photography, Ulay once responded, 'Performance is life itself, and photography is my observation of this life. In other words, performance is primary reality, and photography is primary life presented or made visible as reality.' Performance and photography meet in the statement, 'I am present in photography, I base my photography in the reality of my existence.' This 'ontology of the photographic image' (André Bazin) is the foundation on which the versatility of Ulay's oeuvre rests. The way his work from the period 1970 to 2000 will be presented builds on this approach: not a static survey but a productive demonstration.’ (Invitation text De Appel) Catalogue: Ulay. Polaroid Portraits, 2001. Text: Thomas McEvilley. Dutch & English. 32 pp., duotone, 17 x 21,5 cm. Soft cover. Design: Irma Boom, Sanne Beeren. ISBN 90 73501 55 5. € 15,-.

Poster Ulay – performing light

affiche, 2000