Shifting Shifting by Aernout Mik consisted of four films, Vacuum Room, Raw Footage, Scapegoats and Training Ground, all curated and produced in a collaboration among the four institutions Camden Arts Centre (London), Fruitmarket (Edinburgh), Artverein Hannover and Bergen Kunsthall. To this publication, which was made for the exhibition, Jenni Lomax (director of the Camden Arts Centre, London) contributes a preface introducing Aernout Mik as one of the most acclaimed video artists of his generation. In staged situations, often with a large number of actors, Mik explores group dynamics and role-determined human behaviour. Often the course of events is played out at crucial moments when some kind of crisis threatens to break down the social order. In other words, an ambivalent mixture of realism and play-acting arises.
In the encounter with Mik’s video art the public is situated in a disturbing universe with situations typified by irrational human behaviour. In the catalogue Mick Taussig’s essay approaches the themes on the basis of the social-criticism tradition, but the video stills reproduced are also able to convey the ambivalent uneasiness that the artist wants to evoke. The characteristic absence of sound in the artworks makes them extremely well suited to this reproduction format and the publication therefore constitutes unique documentation of Shifting Shifting, while at the same time it functions as an independent doorway to the oeuvre.
Published by: Camden Arts Centre/London, 2007 in collaboration with Bergen Kunsthall/ Bergen, The Fruitmarked Gallery/Edingburgh and Kunstverein Hannover/Hannover
Editor: Bruce Haines
Artist: Aernout Mik
Texts: Mick Taussig, Jenni Lomax
Design: Irma Boom Office, Amsterdam
Hardcover: 16,5 × 12,5 cm
Price: EUR 12 / NOK 100