The fifth iteration of the Accessibility Note exhibition series will bring to GAVU the Berlin-based, sex-positive, transdisciplinary, genderbender collective COVEN BERLIN. Through memes—yes, the pictures with text anybody can make that are flooding the internet—they will discuss body politics, racial oppression, transphobia, the exclusive aspects of the Art World, physical disability and more.
COVEN BERLIN’s exhibition will present not only their original work, but work curated in collaboration with ten internationally renowned meme artists. Approaching the anniversary of Dada’s first public splash, COVEN’s project at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague is inspired by the movement’s “complete break-up from the logic, reason, and aesthetic of capitalism and good mores” and a desire to have it hold hands with the meme culture that has, as its goal, “infect[ing] our brains with specks of knowledge that stick to it like ticks in an abhorrent kind of spring,” says Crab for the collective.
Press Release by Magdalena J. Härtelova, Curator
On View: 2nd to 25th April 2019
Opening: April 2nd, 17:00 with a performance by COVEN BERLIN
At: Gallery of Academy of Fine Arts in Prague, U Akademie 4, Praha 7
Reflection: Meme Workshop: March 28th, 2pm (free, open to public)
Before the opening, the gallery awaits silently, its insides covered in dank memes. They are the voices of marginalized artists and creators, who speak about themselves for the first time in the format of colorful images and texts created in impact font 72 pp. Memes, like Dada, offer us a way of expression much freer and more accessible than conventional channels.
But is it, really? Is Neodaddyism the promised land where we can roam and express ourselves, free from academic and monetary constraints? Dada is not safe, has never been.
Crab led this 3.5 hour workshop on March 28th, challenging the notion of memes as a free-for-all smörgåsbord of self-expression. Crab started by speaking for an hour about the dangers of blind memeism and the strange creatures that lurk in the deepest regions of the internet, linking these concepts with far-right movements and toxic ideologies.
Afterwards, there was a discussion about how to browse the internet, safe from the power of malignant shitposting and propaganda. After that was cleared out, we discussed the positive power of memes as a way of expressing oneself and coping, and we had a short round of discussion. To finish, we used our hands to make memes the analog way, with scissors and paper, in a truly vintage way, letting the world know what rattles between the walls of our skulls.
Above text by Crab