Friends and collaborators Metahaven (Daniel van der Velden and Vinca Kruk) recently asked me to contribute a short text for their publication project, The Exorcist, a journal that was created for Play Van Abbe, a multi-year exhibition series at Van Abbemuseum in The Netherlands. I was asked to write a reflection on Backbench, which was one of the projects that Bassam El Baroni and I initiated for our part of Manifesta 8. In the end, the project called Backbench that was presented in our exhibition was quite different from how we originally conceived it—and the beautifully designed and captured dramatization (film by Ergin Cavusoglu, set architecture by nOffice) of the actual interactions that comprised Backbench do not convey the full intensity and rawness of the experience. It still stings quite a bit to remember what happened a year ago. My short narrative included in The Exorcist (themed around “Negotiation”) is the only, and thus oblique, response I could manage.
A PDF of the journal is available for download here.
Image courtesy of Metahaven