Spring Exhibtions: Do It & Do It (Archive)

March 3, 2016 – May 8, 2016 all-day
Blue Star Contemporary
116 Blue Star
San Antonio, TX 78204
$5 Adults, $3 Seniors, FREE Military, Venterans, Students, Members
Blue Star Contemporary

What would happen if an exhibition never stopped? Since it began in 1993, with this question being asked by Hans Ulrich Obrist and artists Christian Boltanski and Bertrand Lavier, do it has become the longest-running and most far-reaching exhibition to ever to have happened – constantly evolving and generating evermore relevant new versions of itself. Since ICI’s launch last year to mark the exhibition’s 20th anniversary, do it has toured to venues from New York to Manchester, Budapest to Salt Lake City, and Kosovo to Moscow.

do it began in Paris in 1993 as a conversation between Obrist, Boltanski and Lavier who were curious to see what would happen if they started an exhibition that would never need to stop. To test the idea, Obrist invited 12 artists to propose artworks based on written “scores” or instructions that can be openly interpreted every time they were presented. The instructions were then translated into 9 different languages and circulated internationally as a book. In the 20 years since Obrist, Boltanski and Lavier mused over the potential of “scores,” or written instructions by artists, do it created exhibition formats that could be more flexible and open-ended. Each time it was presented, do it was re-interpreted. Many new versions of the exhibition were formed, including do it (museum), do it (home), do it (TV), do it (seminar), and an online do it in collaboration with e-flux, among others.

The origin and transformation of do it reflects the necessity of exploring collaboration and shared authorship in a constantly evolving art world. The project’s impetus is rooted in the extraordinary effects of globalization on curating and artistic practice in the 1990s, a time that witnessed an unprecedented expansion of the geographies of contemporary art. Twenty years later, do it has taken place in 60+ venues worldwide and includes nearly 400 artists from across the globe, giving new meaning to the concept of an exhibition in progress, while offering infinite creative possibilities for participating audiences everywhere.

Adrian Piper asks audiences to hum a tune in order to enter a room. Ben Kinmont wants us to “invite a stranger into [our] home for breakfast.” Alexandre Singh teaches us how to turn wine into soda. Yoko Ono encourages us to keep wishing. And Mircea Cantor demands that we “burn this book. ASAP,” but John Armleder says to do “None of the above.”

For our selection from the DO IT compendium we have gathered instructions into a few grouping, some that will exist already completed in the gallery space and some for visitors to do. The Person You Are, The Person You Could Be centers on the theme of self reflection and alterations. Some instructions are existential and some are more direct changes and interventions to the physical self. The Calculated Image grouping features instructions that or more precise in nature, resulting in an image or object that is very directed by the instructions with a more specified outcome. Performance Party is a selection of instruction visitors will experience as one offs and during the opening and public programs. Lastly, visitors will be invited to execute a set of instructions at our upcoming Family Saturday, happening April 9, 2016.

Opening Reception
Thursday, Mar 3, 2016
6:00 – 9:00 pm