When Form Becomes Attitude
 

Maria Flawia Litwin, Bear Witness, Kotama Bouabane, Morehshin Allahyari, Christian Jankowski, Isabelle Hayeur, Babak Golkar, Shelagh Keeley

Contemporary Calgary
March 16 – July 30, 2016

What is the political life of a building, place or historic marker? When Form Becomes Attitude points towards this question in considering the role of monuments or concepts around monumentality in constructing cities, nations and ideologies. Featuring artworks by Maria Flawia Litwin, Bear Witness, Kotama Bouabane, Morehshin Allahyari, Christian Jankowski, Isabelle Hayeur, Babak Golkar, and Shelagh Keeley the exhibition reflects on the negotiated intersections of design and power in which monuments are materialized. When Form Becomes Attitude also emphasizes how state-building relates to city-building, while tracing how monuments speak to the mechanisms of architectural memory. In many contexts, monuments are constructed representations of nationalism and political posturing. The artworks in this exhibition, however, raise further questions around how monuments can serve as architectural or materialized devices of resistance, performance and subversion.

 

When Form Becomes Attitude further addresses ideas around posterity in our built environment and how a nation’s official representation of itself, in the case of state sponsored monuments, prompts larger negotiations surrounding the rendering of nationalism. Equally, or perhaps more importantly, the artists within this exhibition carefully mine around and between these official renderings as a way to consider the speculative use or abuse of monuments as agents of power, politicking, gentrification, geopolitics and globalization.