Transnational Capitalism Examined by Oliver Ressler

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Oliver Ressler, Transnational Capitalism Examined, exhibition view.

Oliver Ressler (Knittelfeld, Austria, 1970) will have a prominent role in PIIGS’ public program (4 to 6 November, Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Turin) and he will give his point of view on the economic crisis in its various aspects in dialogue with Emanuele Guidi. During the last months Italy has dedicated special attention to him through a series of exhibitions that allowed the Austrian artist to expose his line of research. Everything Under Control was the first solo show in an Italian institution, ar / ge kunst Bolzano (26 February to 30 April 2016), an exhibition that primarily highlights the importance of video as a medium of a narrative that focuses on the ambiguity of the language used by the capitalist system to hide the effects of the crisis – not only economic – and the disparities between North and South. The exhibition reached its climax with Occupy, Resist, Produce (2014-2015), a three-channels video installation that in centralized on the meetings of workers of factories which had been already abandoned by their legal owners (Milan, Rome, Thessaloniki), their voices from the inside compare one to another and try to propose alternative social systems. The Visible and the Invisible (2014), also exhibited in Bolzano, is the last video of Transnational Capitalism Examined: Dancing on Systemically Important Graves, at the Fondazione Pastificio Cerere in Rome (27 September to 26 November 2016). This artwork tells the thorny reality of the commodity trade, particularly in Switzerland which is the main actress in a wild trading that acts only virtually as the products never pass through the Swiss territory. Ressler opposes to this invisibility the often catastrophic, visible, exploitation of the mining areas and of human labor in the South. The images flow marked by a smoky layer, a metaphor for the deadly toxic emissions that have anything to do with the calm, almost anonymity of Swiss commodity trading headquarters, authorized companies that contribute heavily to increase the gap between the northern few enriched and misery of the South. The exhibition in Rome proposes four other videos, the graphic rendering of an installation and a small bibliography that emphasizes on the one hand the Ressler’s documentary attitude, on the other his belief of art as sharp critical tool. In The Bull Laid Bear, made in collaboration with Zanny Begg (2012), those governments that have tried in every way to push through the banking crisis as collective economic crisis, contributing to the worsening of the global situation. The work includes four interviews with economists and activists which alternate a series of humorous cartoons of gangster bankers and corrupt courts. The Ressler’s survey is completed by Transnational Capitalism Examined: Border as Method, the second part of the roman project curated by Mike Watson, exhibited at The Gallery Apart (28 September to 26 November 2016).

Pastificio Cerere – Transnational Capitalism Examined

The Gallery Apart – Transnational Capitalism Examined 

Gianpaolo Cacciottolo