Rita Mcbride. (Reviews: Vaduz Liechtenstein)

By Reust, Hans Rudolf | Artforum International, January 2003 | Go to article overview

Rita Mcbride. (Reviews: Vaduz Liechtenstein)


Reust, Hans Rudolf, Artforum International


KUNSTMUSEUM LIECHTENSTEIN

Translated from German by Sara Ogger.

A sexy artist named Gina Ashcraft is the protagonist of thirteen scenarios set in airports and train stations. Her goal is to seduce and be seduced in the midst of her art. This dime-store novel, serving as the catalogue for Rita McBride's exhibition, is the work of thirteen colleagues, among them artists John Baldessari and Juliao Sarmento and curator Dirk Snauwaert. Its combination of soft-core pornography, nomadic mobility, and art easily grasped by the public touches on the chief stereotypes of the art market of the '90s: "Back on the plane again and ready to depart. I had been in Lisbon for just five hours. But in those five hours I think I finally got the material I need to complete the play I want to stage in Luxembourg. I am going to put on the 'Arena' again and this time it will act as a cloak for an ideal space of contemplation. On the wall in front of the 'Arena,' diametrically opposite the potential spectators, on the other side of the wall, where I won't be seen, I will screen, at full size, the film I just shot in Lisbon, in a fifth floor brothel. Thus I will be at the same time the spectator, the artist, who exhibits, and the object of desire, that is displayed, even though this display is prohibited by the very characteristics that the exhibition demands. The 'Arena' shows and hides as it shows ... it exhibits and rejects its own existence as an object that determines the parameters of desire."

And in fact this was the fifth building of McBride's Arena, first presented in 1997 at Witte de With, Rotterdam. The sculptural semicircle, which mimics the lines of athletic shoes in its transparent seating construction, imports the mass dynamic of sporting events into the realm of art. …

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