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‘Invisible Adversaries’

Exhibition dates 27 February - 25 April 2009
Preview: Thursday 26 February 6:00 - 8:00pm

'Invisible Adversaries' brings together a range of international artists whose work explores gender relations.

As part of 'Invisible Adversaries', New York based artist Laurel Nakadate's film 'Oops' will be showing in the Project Space. Here Nakadate "turns from a baby doll into an avenging angel - [she is] a wolf in baby doll's clothing" in Jerry Saltz's words.

'Oops' documents three occasions where arranged 'dates' with men she found on several dating websites. Each time she set up the 'dates' to create performances for the camera with the men. In her works Nakadate turns herself into the object of the men's fantasies so completely that it becomes alarming and absurding. She does so to expose how ugly, predictable, and plain dull such fantasies are.

For Nakadate, our images of young women are dominated by the entertainment industries - by pop music, films, computer games, TV and glossy magazines. To her, these industries mostly do little more than exploit young women's physical attributes to generate profits for middle-aged men. Here, she does the reverse: being exploitative of her 'dates', her encounters are both comic and uncomfortable.  Her aim is simply to make clear what the ordinary power relations are between the sexes, and ask what roles we occupy and take for granted. In all her works, the artist directs and controls a situation to ask: what might a society look like where the roles and rules of behaviour for men and women were overturned?

 


Laurel Nakadate: 'Oops' 2003
3:25 minutes, three channels
Courtesy the artist and Danziger Projects, New York