lives and works in Whitstable, Kent, UK and London.
Adam Chodzko’s art explores the interactions and possibilities of human behaviour. Working across media, from video installation to subtle interventions, with a practice that is situated both within the gallery and the wider public realm, his work investigates and invents the possibilities of collective imagination through using a poetics of everyday life. By wondering how, through the visual, we might best engage with the existence of others he reveals the realities that emerge from the search for this knowledge.
Chodzko’s art proposes new relationships between our value and belief systems, exploring their effect on our communal and private spaces and the documents and fictions that control, describe and guide them. Working directly with the networks of people and places that surround him, often using forms of anthropology, Chodzko focuses on the relational politics of culture’s edges, endings, displacements, transitions and disappearances through a provocative looking in the ‘wrong’ place; a search for knowledge through instability. His art is catalysed by imagining a collapse of the category of Art, requiring not only a new audience but also a new status for the art object. Chodzko’s practice operates in the tight, poetic spaces he evolves between documentary and fantasy, conceptualism and surrealism, and public and private space, often engaging reflexively and directly with the role of the viewer.
Els Hanappe collaborated with Adam Chodzko in 2001, 2004, and 2012, organizing solo shows that presented important ensembles of works including Meeting, Limbo Land, Plan for a Spell, Design for a Carnival, Bone Mask Filter Tour, Mask Filters, Ghost Archive, Ark, Next Meeting, Turning Point, and Suddenly we all began…
Installation at the Benaki Museum Pireos Annexe, Athens. The artist was asked to interact and work with the historical archives of the Benaki Museum. The result was a series of advertisting posters for exhibitions set in the future.
Ink jet prints on paper with marks by hand. 118,9 x 84,1 cm each.
“Although. Test Prints for the New Arrivals“. 2010
Although. Test Prints for the New Arrivals arose through imagining that by chance, or design, various groups using a print studio/print shop have no other paper to use for their tests decide that they must cut the pages from this book that happens to be lying around. Its information is considered redundant since it was published 3 years before the Iranian revolution. A silk screen image is printed showing a distorted logo from the Iranian Space Agency. Further recycling of the pages see a wood engraving appearing, depicting an image of a black sun, black hole, flower or anus.
As individual prints, each collector is getting something more than an identical multiple, and yet they are also getting something less; it is a fragment of a whole.
Silk-screened two colour monoprint, rolled monoprint and hand-burnished wood engraving onto pages 16-288, “Iran. Rebirth of a Timeless Empire.” by Rene Maheu, Jean Boissel and Bruno Barbey, Published by Grands Livres, 1976. 304mm x 255mm.
“The Pickers”. 2009
The Pickers shows a group of Romanian migrant workers at a UK strawberry farm who alternate their intensive strawberry picking with the editing and mediation of a 20th century film archive of British migrant hop pickers. Sited in a parallel reality distinctions are blurred as to where and when events are set, as they are between notions of labour and leisure, and the identity of an archive and its dissemination. ‘The Pickers’ becomes a dream; a Romanian advertisement to British migrant workers to come to Romania.
Single channel DVD projection with sound. 17 mins 52 secs.
This project starts out from the Mask-Filters, a series of sculptures that have been fitted with a camera lens adapter. The world is seen through of ‘mask’ of fish bones, chopsticks, quills, …
Colour Photographs. 35cm x 23.2cm each.
For the Next Meeting series Chodzko uses tourists’ ‘amateur’ images, recorded on 35mm slides from a large archive he has amassed, taken on their travels in the 1950’s – early 1980’s, and juxtaposed them with travel directions to particular locations (that might potentially function as a meeting place), from tourist guides published during this same period. Although the details of these directions were accurate at the time of publishing, Chodzko now chooses them because at least parts of them have become obsolete, names have changed, businesses have altered etc. Chodzko selects the images according to their capacity to show some evidence of ‘amateurism’; a wonky angle or a strange composition, and also to show some evidence of their time via clothes or car design and even evidence of political change, but also the film quality itself in terms of colour, grain and degradation.
These images are taken to show the photographer/tourist’s proximity to a place (as a deferred performance to their friends and family, once home).
Each work in this series has just one location in the world where it is exhibited in a remote but public place. So, there’s the place of the image, the place of the text, and the place of the flyposting with the dialogue between them catalysed by their disparity of association.
Colour Photographs. 40 cm x 60 cm. (Editions of 5).
Lithographic Posters for fly-posting. (Editions of 200).
“Turning Point”. 2007
Turning Point is a slowly evolving, delicate set of images in which a pin pays a primary role.
A performance for drivers on a bridge
80 x 35mm carousel slide projection. 5 minutes.
Design for a Carnival is an evolving project. It exists as a series of videos, re-mixed music, billboard projects, drawings, large scale public art works and small ephemeral events which collectively propose an entirely new form of festival – a model for a community to engage with each other in a way which is full of play and disorder, free from commerce, words, reason, and fixed hierarchies or identities.
For extensive information on the artist and his oeuvre, please consult the artist’s website at www.adamchodzko.com
or watch any of the following YouTube clips:
TateShots: Adam Chodzko at Tate St Ives
TateShots: Contemporary Responses to Kurt Schwitters
Adam Chodzko: Rising
Rising: Future of the Race (audio clip)
The Pickers (excerpt) 2009
Adam Chodzko: Echo
Echo (excerpt) 2009
Sculpture in the City 2015: Ghost by Adam Chodzko
Pyramid (excerpt) 2008
Hole (excerpt) 2010
Around (excerpt) 2007
Yet (excerpt) 2005
Design for a Carnival (excerpt) 2003
Plan for a Spell (excerpt) 2001