Prem Krishnamurthy in conversation with Valentijn Goethals.
What would be a long view of exhibition making? How might an exhibition last forever?
These questions are intrinsic to Endless Exhibition (2018–ongoing), a curatorial-manifesto-as-artwork by Prem Krishnamurthy that surveys the overproduction, mass consumption, and fleeting attention span of the contemporary art world. Endless Exhibition has guided the exhibition program of the experimental art institution Kunsthal Gent since its formation. In the program, curators and artists are invited to develop a contribution to an exhibition that has no end date. New additions always put pressure on the existing situation. The discussion about how the new work relates to the existing work raises timely questions of space, waste, labor, and questions the autonomy and 'untouchability' of individual, finished artworks.
Together with Valentijn Goethals, one of Kunsthal Gent’s coordinators and commissioner of the project, Prem will unpack this long term project from its conceptual origins—including the seemingly simple injunction that every exhibition should last forever—and its legal and contractual aspects, to its ongoing implementation by the institution. This dialogue allows for new models for exhibition making and institution building to emerge.
Prem Krishnamurthy is a designer, author, and educator. His multifaceted work explores the role of art as an agent of transformation at an individual, collective, and structural level. He received the Cooper Hewitt National Design Award for Communications Design in 2015 and KW Institute for Contemporary Art’s “A Year With…” residency fellowship in 2018. He has curated several large-scale exhibitions including FRONT International 2022: Oh, Gods of Dust and Rainbows. His book-length epistolary essay, On Letters, was published in 2022. He currently direct Wkshps and Department of Transformation.
Valentijn Goethals is part of the artist collective 019 and is a founding member of Kunsthal Gent. Although trained as a graphic designer and artist, Valentijn is largely active as an exhibition maker and coordinator within both organizations. He is interested in in-between spaces for intuitive experimentation, collaboration and encounters between architecture, graphic design, and visual art, and likes to break through usual ways of exhibiting in artistic and non-artistic spaces. Prior to the establishment of Kunsthal Gent, Valentijn worked primarily as a musician within various projects.
This talk is a part of the Academy of Fine Art’s public program and the talk will be led by professor Lisa Rosendahl.