The exhibition Without Beginning /Without End retrospectively encompasses the last ten years in the artistic output of Ignasi Aballí (Barcelona, 1958), an artist that often re-examines the exhibition and narrative strategies in conceptual art. Yet, as hinted at in the exhibition title, Aballí’s work gathers together much broader references that shine a spotlight on literature and film. As in the novels of his much-admired Georges Perec, Aballí’s work analyses different artistic mediums in their mode of use; namely, the elements that shape, structure and determine them in a more conventional way. For instance, in literature a book’s compositional and invisible elements: the index, bibliography, chapters and blank pages at the beginning and end. In exploring this paradox in different formats, for instance photography, painting, film and press information, the artist looks at the distinction between the perceptible and that which is not visible, and, likewise, subverts the idea of value in an artwork – a systematic yet futile attempt to trap temporary eventuality, articulating work that is designed as a semantic analysis from its margins.
This conversation, which is part of the series encounters, sees the artist and curator pass beyond the exhibition to delve deeper into a body of work that simultaneously calls upon the poetics of chance and archive.
Ignasi Aballí. Artist. He has exhibited in solo and collective shows in museums and arts centres like MACBA (Barcelona), Artium (Vitoria), Museu Serralves (Porto), Pinacoteca do Estado (São Paulo), Ikon Gallery (Birmingham) and ZKM (Karlsruhe, Germany). Following 0-24h in 2006, this is his second retrospective.
João Fernandes. Deputy Director of the Museo Reina Sofía and curator of the exhibition Ignasi Aballí. Without Beginning / Without End.