After IN|OUT SOURCE – AMNUA International Project I, selected artists alongside their art works once again returned to galleries, museums, storages, studios, factories and companies, or were shipped to the next project or exhibition, to re-enter international art production lines. In the art world, production lines continued to run methodically, as production lines do throughout the world. Whether it be ‘One Belt And One Road’ (OBOR) or the ‘Trans-Pacific Partnership’ (TPP), such strategies, practices and ideas, with their critical opposites, feed into production lines of reality and text. China continues to produce and to be present, floating between the Pacific Ocean and Western Paradise. At that moment, the RMB Cross-border Interbank Payment System (CIPS) had quietly been launched, covering the OBOR and TPP ports, and the RMB successfully entered into the Special Drawing Right (SDR). All kinds of Silk Roads were suddenly preregistered across the lands and seas and the international company rose to prominence.
On a micro level, art activities show that the artists are increasingly conscious of their position and role in the framework of an economic system, which means their economic self-practice. On the one hand, artists consciously, or unconsciously, enter into closed systems which surround expos, biennales, museums, collections and galleries etc. They participate, spy, conspire and plot amidst systems of the art world, or use the system to criticize and subvert the system itself. Despite the lagging development of contemporary capitalism’s metamorphosis, super galleries as transnational enterprises are growing increasingly in tune to the spirits of TPP (crossing and subverting national borders and ports, and replacing the nation with companies in order to encourage the circulation of capital). Similarly, this can be used to describe the worldwide expansion of fairs and biennales, and their economy. Even artists operate according to their own ‘fairs’ and ‘biennales’, placing them within a positive framework of internationalism. On the other hand, artists are trying to break free from the operation of this system, using their own alternative means to create an economic cycle, usually by being extremely individual, supplementary or microscopic in their operation – a micro-economy as a resistance to economy in art.
On a macro level, art economy and overall social economy are ‘offshore’ from one other. This points to a mutual disassociation from consumption and production of both contemporary art production and overall social production, meaning the production and consumption of contemporary art is increasingly reduced to an overly extravagant and elite economy. Furthermore, it also means the art economy and social economy are increasingly implanted in one another as ‘offshores’, encouraging the growth of tumours which cannot be cut free, but which simultaneously offer a variety of possibilities for new economic systems. What’s more, does art economy simply repeat time and again the cliché between life and art, that ‘life imitates art’? When considering the relationship of art to life and reality, in a positive sense, the involvement and intervention of art in life and reality is much the same as the relationship between the two economic partnership systems, that is, they mutually penetrate one another and treat each other as ‘offshore’.
In the end it is inevitable that economics is political economics. Does that not bring us back to the tracing, planning and implementing the real frameworks such as BAR, TTP and CIPS? Is politics our ultimate shore?
Is there a kind offshore practice which goes beyond the opposing economic ports of the aforementioned systems? IN |OUT SOURCE is a changeable strategy which, from micro to macro, drifts freely as an ‘offshore’ throughout all kinds of fields and levels, breeding possibility and directed towards the critical point of each event. This process is blind or conscious smuggling. Smuggling is the implementation of proactive and friendly partnerships over borders that cannot be crossed, rejecting monopolies raised from anti-monopoly negotiations. When unforeseen images of corporations lying on the beaches briefly upset the harmony of everyday life, a kind of invigorating and free momentum appears.
International corporations will implement this kind of smuggling as they search for new ways to produce art exhibitions, incorporating market analysis, product development, marketing, promotion and expanding methods of reproduction. Through coordinated implementation and retracing different versions of the ‘Silk Road’, they will use negotiation and implementation of the micro ‘rise’ and micro ‘cultural and art trade partnership’ in order to produce art exhibitions.
SILK ROAD INTERNATIONAL will present all kinds of political economy practices that attempt to be ‘offshore’, regardless of whether it is organized in the form of a company, be it an art company, artist, collective, group, alternative space or organization, gallery, critic or writer; or a kind of doctrine, be it aesthetics, ideology, artworks, derivatives, daily products, bodies, art galleries, exhibitions or text.
About the exhibition
Date: 4 – 31th Mar. 2016
Venue: Art Museum of Nanjing University of the Arts, Nanjing, China
Selected artists, projects, groups, collectives, curators, writers and activists: Alexandre Ouairy, Apartment of Dreams Come True, Cheng Jialiang, Cabinet of Wonder, Douglas Lewis, Exhibitionist, Fanchang Shit, 596 Acres, Hu Xiangqian, Hua Weihua, iRRi ART, Ju Anqi, Lai Chih-Sheng, Li Zhanyang, Liu Chengrui, Lin Ke, Li Mu, Moe Satt, Mira Calix, Cai Dongdong, Pink, Republic, Qilin Stall, Shi Jinsong, Song Ta, Shop of Painting Art, Very MK rooftop farm Very MK, Xue Wenwen, Xu Tan, Xu Lu, Xu Liwei, Path Project, Xiao Wucong, Yu Ying, Yue Luping, Yangjiang Group
Producer: Li Xiaoshan
Curator: Wang Yamin
Liu Ting, Media specialist
Qu Jum, Exhibition Executive
Tao Feifei, Curatorial Assistant & Designer
Mao Chunhai, Exhibition Executive
Li Li & Luo Xi, Public education
Gao Ya, Designer
Xu Jiaxin, Curatorial Intern
Shen Mu Lin Feng, Curatorial Intern
Francesca Leiper, Curatorial Intern
Cai Bao, Curatorial Intern
Courtesy of the artists and AMNUA, for further information please visit www.nuamuseum.org.