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NB: as of 23 September 2008, all new artSMart articles are being published on the site news.artsmart.co.za.

NOH INTERIOR (article first published : 2007-08-11)

A group of international artists working in London and Berlin come to Durban with an eclectic mix of contemporary artworks which will be married to select pieces from the DAG permanent collection to form the next exhibition at the Durban Art Gallery entitled Noh Interior which runs for a short interactive season with a satellite performance at the KZNSA Gallery on August 18.

Noh Interior is presented by DAG’s Jenni Stretton and Adrian Hermanides, a South African artist living and working in Berlin. Adrian Hermanides was a founder member of the watershed Flat Gallery in Durban about a decade ago.

Noh Interior is manifest as a series of connected interludes. Light, mid-afternoon diversions that deftly and gracefully compare, contrast, compound and converge ideas and objet contributed by international and local artists as well as work gleaned from the permanent collection, in a contingent space and a reclaimed time,” says Adrian Hermanides.

“The exhibition will inhabit the gallery while the existing exhibitions are in the process of transformation, it is an almost exhibition in a constant state of rearrangement that may or may not ever be experienced as a totality. By insinuating itself into the recently, and only temporarily vacated spatiotemporal zones, properly inhabited by the legitimate programme offered by the Durban Art Gallery, Noh Interior politely declines a participation in the formalities of discourse in favour of a parasitic and improper attachment to the myriad pleasures of the visual made available by this venerable institution,” he continues.

Noh Interior offers only a succession of partial views, none of them making any claim to any kind of authority. The respective archives from which Noh Interior is constituted then converge as a celebration, of particular modes of reclamation and re examination.

“The collection of the Durban Art Gallery, entrenched in the fripperies of Victorian mannerism has undergone a difficult appraisal of the relations of power which it implicitly reflects and supports,” Adrian Hermanides adds. “Similarly the archive of, poignantly time-based ephemera with which the work is to be placed, too inhabits, yet revels in a contested territory, defined through contemporary queer discourse, but rooted in degraded and highly mannered forms. This is a collection of work that with one hand resting on hip, and tongue firmly in cheek, simply can’t be bothered to reject the convoluted dialogues of high art - painting, sculpture…even installation in favour of fleeting, transient, highly romanticised performative moments, that are captured through film or sound, scribbled on scraps or whispered onto the rumour wave.”

Noh Interior includes work by (on day one and two) artists Cerith Wyn Evans, Jan Molzberger, D-L Alvarez, Wayne Smith, Julian Goethe, Antje Stoffler Hamad, Adrian Hermanides, Tom Burr and Yusuf Etiman and the Basso boys as well as poet Karl Holmquist.

On day three and four participants include Starship : Publishers; artists Henrik Olesen, Judith Hopf, Gerry Bibby, Dominique and friends, Gelitin: David Lieske Cerith Wyn Evans and CUTUP with galerist Caryl Ivrisse; musicians and filmmakers House of Egypt and filmmaker James Richards.

Offsite participants include composer Florian Hecker, acoustician Alberto De Campo, artist collective Cutup; artist Dennis Kuhlow and Adrian Hermanides.

Noh Interior takes place at the Durban Art Gallery daily from August 14 to 1 with a satellite performance called No Interior at the KZNSA on August 18.




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