There is a particular magnetism in things. I feel the way they cling to me especially now, as I travel from one country to another by train, wanting nothing (I tell myself) but to travel lightly, and instead weighted down by what I cannot throw away. Even as I am having an “experience” (travel), I am tethered to my objects. There are the essentials, or what must come with—my dog, for instance, a toothbrush, underwear, and some clothes—but a lot more of the inessentials: three dog toys, a pair of yellowed goggles, a cigar box full of art supplies that includes two pairs of scissors plus an X-Acto knife, a curved sewing needle and bits of ribbon, thoroughly read copies of the London Review of Books, and a board game with instructions only in Spanish, a language I do not read. The last item I managed to offload onto a friend I met up with in Croatia. A best friend, to be sure (who else takes on the burden of your things?), who begrudgingly agreed to bring this and a heavy, hardcover exhibition catalogue back to the United States ahead of me.
* Nicholas Johnson *
How does an artist make something now that compels us to look longer than our modernised attention spans are accustomed to looking? The piling up, ease of access to, and relentless mutation of cultural information occasioned by the internet has so drastically altered the way we look and process images that it’s nearing impossible to remember a time when it was any different. Two artists: Camille Henrot and Helen Marten, present two new methods of dealing with this increasingly dense accrual of objects and information.