Panel discussion + book launch of Habits and customs of _______ are so different from ours that we visit them with the same sentiment that we visit exhibitions, co-published by Kadist Art Foundation and 3-ply.
Habits and customs of _______ are so different from ours so that we visit them with the same sentiment that we visit exhibitions is the shared title of two interwoven experiments with curatorial form. The first is an exhibition curated by Biljana Ciric at Kadist Art Foundation, Paris, February 20 – April 30, 2016, featuring works by 3-ply, Irena Haiduk, Ho Tzu Nyen, Siniša Ilić, Li Liao, Lu Huanzhi, and occurrences of works by Eva Barto. The second is a publication, which constituted 3-ply’s contribution to the physical exhibition, consisting of a looseleaf risograph cover, and a variable selection of digital print booklets developed in collaboration with Irena Haiduk, Ho Tzu Nyen, Siniša Ilić, Li Liao, Lu Huanzhi and Eva Barto. The design and structure of the publication was modelled after packaged gifts of clothing, snacks, vitamins, art supplies and toys, which facebook groups of Australian volunteers solicit and mail to asylum seekers detained on Manus Island and Nauru. Along the way, donated items disappear, procured for personal use by customs agents or camp security, or confiscated for fluctuating security regulations. The postal declaration of contents acts as an archival trace of intention and precarity, with absences signalling the material chain of handling and mishandling, and casual observers profiting from the iterative objectification of distant others. 3-ply’s share of proceeds from sales of this publication will be donated to the purchase of phone credits for asylum seekers.
On the occasion of the launch of Habits and customs… 3-ply presents a panel discussion exploring publication as a curatorial form, engaging with art historical and speculative perspectives. Helen Hughes will share research that has informed a curatorial collaboration between Discipline magazine and the Tarrawarra Biennial, considering recent collaborations between major curatorial events and art periodicals, such as e-flux’s Supercommunity project at the 2015 Venice Biennale, Dis magazine’s appointment as curators of the 2016 Berlin Biennial, and Documenta and the Athens-based art journal South as a State of Mind. Drawing on her experience with Small Bore Books, and other examples from Aotearoa/New Zealand, Emma Bugden will focus on publishing projects that seek to re-publish the past, interrogating what it means to bring forward selected elements of publishing history, and what the lens of the present brings to reading the past. Turning to publishing/curatorial discourse within an institutional perspective, Megan Patty will examine international examples and vision opportunities for museums to expand their role in activating cultural content through contemporary publishing platforms.
Fayen d’Evie is the founder of 3-ply, which focuses on publication, writing, editing and translation as an extension of art practice. In exhibition settings, 3-ply operates as a shifting collaborative, investigating artist-led publishing as an experimental site for the creation, mutation, dispersal, and archiving of texts.
Helen Hughes is Research Curator at Monash University Museum of Art, a Lecturer in Art History and Curatorial Practice at Monash University, and co-founder and co-editor of Discipline. She is currently working on a collaboration between Discipline and the 2016 Tarrawarra Biennial.
Emma Bugden is a New Zealand curator and editor of Small Bore Books, a not-for-profit specialist publisher in art and design focusing on out-of-print artist books, journals and other publications, bringing significant texts to new audiences, with a particular interest in New Zealand cultural production, from the 1940s to the present day.
Megan Patty is Senior Publications Coordinator, National Gallery of Victoria and initiator of the Melbourne Art Book Fair. Her research interests include contemporary publishing practices and the role modern museums play in their dissemination.
Image credit: Habits and customs of …… are so different from ours that we visit them with the same sentiment that we visit exhibitions; exhibition curated by Biljana Ciric, Kadist Art Foundation, February 20 – April 30, 2016; publication edited by Biljana Ciric and Fayen d’Evie; risograph cover and page spreads from “Yugoexport” by Irena Haiduk; published by Kadist Art Foundation and 3-ply, Paris, 2016; composite of photos by Sophie Potelon.