Artists’ introduction Friday 29 March, 1-2pm
Grand Union proudly presents Grand Union proudly presents 999321 Kjersti G. Andvig and Lars Laumann’s first collaborative exhibition in the UK. Both works in the exhibition involve Carlton A. Turner, a Texan death row inmate whose prison number makes the title.
No One Here Is Innocent (2006 – 2008) is a hand knitted full-scale replica of Turner’s death row cell and his home for almost 10 years. The work was collaboration between Turner and Andvig, and part of a larger project, which drew its inspiration from Les Tricoteuse, woman who knitted next to the guillotine during the French revolution. As the project evolved notions of time, space and isolation came to the fore. Their professional relationship lasted over 2 years, in which time they were in continuous dialogue about the content and aesthetics of the work.
Laumann’s video Shut Up Child, This Ain’t Bingo picks up after Andvig and Turner’s professional relationship has ended as his execution date nears. Their relationship has evolved from friendly collaboration to romantic attachment. Andvig is found living with fervent Christians who believe that religion will save Turner from his inevitable fate. Regularly visiting Turner in prison they retrospectively discuss their collaborative project as the execution date draws ever closer. Turner reflects on his relationship with Andvig, stating it to have been the only intellectual partnership of his life. Discussions about miracles gather force as Turner is simultaneously granted a stay of execution, partly legitimizing the intense belief that God brought about this chain of events.
The works in 999321 present an object and a narrative that are interconnected and compliment each other, but this is the first time they have been shown together. The intimate nature of the works draws you in and we are made privy not only to the thoughts and feelings of a condemned man and that of his loved ones, but also the environment of his final remaining days. At its basest level the works question the continued use of capital punishment, while the absence of judgment imparted by its main protagonists attest to a need for a wider understanding of social justice and punishment.
Lars Laumann (b.1977, Oslo, Norway) Laumann studied at The Royal Norwegian Academy of Fine art and the North Norwegian Film and Art School, Kabelvåg. Major solo exhibitions include VI, VII, Oslo, Norway (2012), Kunsthalle Winterthur, Switzerland (2010), Maureen Paley, London (2010) and White Columns, New York (2007). Significant groups shows include Nordic Art/Between Miracles, CCA, Georgia (2013), PARADOX. Positions in Norwegian video art 1980 – 2010, The nationals Museum if Art, Oslo, Norway (2013), Tate Modern Project Space, Objects in Mirror are Closer than they Appear, London (2012) Soundworks, ICA, London (2012), The Royal Family, Hayward Project Space, London (2011), Touched, The Liverpool Biennial, Liverpool (2010) &5th Berlin Biennial, Berlin (2008).
Kjersti G. Andvig (b.1978, Oslo, Norway) Andvig studied at National Academy of Fine Art, Oslo & North Norwegian Art and Film School, Kabelvåg. Major solo exhibitions include Enhanced Sky Machine, No place, Oslo (2012), Did You Expect the Moon to be Square, Akershus Kunstsenter, Lillestrøm, Norway (2010), Swallow My Gift, Rekord, Oslo (2009) and Personne ici n’est Innocent, Triangle France, Marseille, France (2008). Significant group shows include Reoriented, Havremagasinet, Boden (2012), Lofoten International Art Festival (LIAF 2011), Kabelvåg. The Anti-Social Majority, Kunsthalle, Oslo (2011) The Carnegie Art Award, Reykjavik, Stockholm & Oslo (2010) and Off the wall, Kunstnernes Hus, Oslo (2008).
Both artists currently live and work in Brussels, Belgium and St. Louis, Senegal.