‘Trade Show’ is a group exhibition that exercises the function of art to exchange, present and enact different economic practices and cultures of trade.
The exhibition presents trade as a universal activity deeply embedded in almost everything we do, reminding us of the possibilities and complexities of living in a society where everything must mean and be worth something. ‘Trade Show’ contributes to a strong trading culture where roles are changeable, economies are collaborative and the imperative of a not-only-for-profit ethos prevails.
The first trade of ‘Trade Show’ is with the economic geographer Katherine Gibson who is writing an essay in exchange for James Langdon’s redesign of ‘The Economy as an Iceberg’, an illustration symbolising her feminist critique of political economy that focuses upon dominant capitalism. The ‘iceberg beneath the water’ is revealed within Eastside Projects as a series of trading stations take centre stage, including the ‘International Village Shop’, ‘Feral Trade’, ‘Field Cycles’, ‘Editions Shop UK’ and ‘Open Shop’.
On the facade of the building are a set of new signs by Birmingham based design studio An Endless Supply, which continue inside the main gallery identifying the array of trading moments around the space, ranging from Jens Haaning’s ‘Redistribution (Birmingham – Karachi)’ 2013, a new discrete poetic artwork that redistributes the gallery lighting and Bob & Roberta Smith’s 2013 painting ‘Letter to Gove’, to Valie Export’s seminal 1968 performance ‘Tapp- und Tast-Kino’ (Tap and Touch Cinema).In the second gallery Casco will present a communal reader and ‘Sitting is a Verb – Rietveld for (Un)usual business.’, a Rietveld crate chair workshop by artist Aimée Zito Lema.
Thank you to European Cultural Foundation for their generous support for ‘Let’s Trade – cultural explorations into trade and alternative economies’, with myvillages.org (Netherlands) and Atelier d’Architecture Autogeree (AAA) (France). Exhibition supported by Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York. The Paris based ‘R-Urban’ project by atelier d’architecture autogéréé will host a second stage of ‘Trade Show’ in spring 2014. Curated by Kathrin Böhm & Gavin Wade.