Variable Capital

Campbell, David and Durden, Mark (2008) Variable Capital. [Show/Exhibition]

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Commissioned by Bryan Biggs for Liverpool Bluecoat’s European Capital of Culture exhibition programme, the exhibition Variable Capital was a curatorial project by David Campbell and Mark Durden. Featuring the work of thirteen international artists, Variable Capital explored how artists working in very different geographic, social and cultural locations addressed the impact of globalised, and local forms of commodity consumption. Artists from Asia, South America, Europe and the USA, were selected to explore the range of representational strategies employed to address issues of commonality and difference in the experience of globalised consumption. The exhibition’s thematic was a critical response to Common Culture’s own participation in Shopping – A Century of Art and Consumer Culture, The Tate Gallery Liverpool, which promoted a conventional, celebratory relationship between art and the commodity. Variable Capital counter-posed two approaches to the experience of consumerism; an art highlighting the process of exploitation and alienation underpinning commodity consumption and one that critically engaged with the seductive allure and spectacle of the commodity.

The exhibition, attracted 15,000 visitors, included work by Edward Burtynsky, Common Culture, Louise Lawler, Wang Qingsong, Larry Sultan, Brian Ulrich, Hans Op de Beeck, Alexander Gerdel, Richard Hughes, Julian Rosefeldt, Santiago Sierra and Andy Warhol.

The symposium Damaged Goods accompanied the exhibition and featured a gallery talk by Campbell and Durden and a panel discussion between the curators and Michael Bracewell and Carol Mavor.

Item Type: Show/Exhibition
Subjects: W100 Fine Art
Department: Faculties > Arts, Design and Social Sciences > Arts
Depositing User: David Campbell
Date Deposited: 11 May 2012 12:57
Last Modified: 24 Oct 2017 08:11

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