About the Untitled 2022/2023
galerie frank elbaz is pleased to announce its first solo exhibition of Croatian artist Tomo Savić-Gecan.
The gallery first introduced Savić-Gecan’s work at Art Basel Unlimited 2023. Untitled, 2023 is a participative performance work based on randomly selected art news articles which are analyzed in relation to the latest ‘Art Market: An Art Basel and UBS Report’ to provide the data that feeds an artificial intelligence algorithm; this, in turn, prescribes the times, locations, and durations of the changes of intensity in selected lights inside Art Basel. The various locations of the piece are announced daily on the website as well as on large screens situated at Unlimited and the booth of galerie frank elbaz. The public is invited to go to those locations and observe their surroundings, unwittingly becoming part of the performance themselves.
During Tomo Savić-Gecan’s upcoming exhibition at galerie frank elbaz, the position of newly built walls will change daily, according to instructions from an artificial intelligence algorithm that is fed by data from press releases and the position of artworks of previous gallery exhibitions to constitute Tomo Savić-Gecan, Untitled, 2023.
This new work inscribes itself in a series of work initiated by the artist during his representation of Croatia at the 59th Venice Biennale of Art all whilst reflecting the artists over 30 years of conceptual practice.
Untitled (Croatian Pavilion), 2022, reconceived the notion of a pavilion as a fixed location, instead dispersing Croatian representation throughout the whole of the Biennale, while creating a discreet performative project that will stand out for its engagement with one of the most pertinent issues facing our time: what it means to be human at a moment when digital technologies are revolutionizing our lives. The piece triangulates its key tenets—the news, which is to say, the selective, subjective reporting on the events of the world; artificial intelligence, meaning the complex of algorithmic systems that play an invisible and yet dominantly insidious role in our present; and the flesh-and-blood bodies of humans, the baseline of human existence and experience.1
Untitled, 2023 also echoes Savić-Gecan’s 2020 retrospective at the MSU, Zagreb where the artists performed Spatial Interventions I, II and III intervening on the placement of the walls in the museum.
Looking back at the last three decades of his artistic activity, Savić-Gecan has been concatenating ever more complex sequences and layerings of infrastructural systems, institutional arrangements and human actions to operate together across ever greater geographic distances. As his works expanded in complexity and geography, their modes of presentation have tended to become ever more evanescent and intangible. In fact, exhibition spaces have, more frequently than not, come to serve as one final step in the chain of operations that his works link together, utilising human presence, infrastructures of display and ambiental systems in those spaces only to subtly suggest that there are offsite operations that the visitors have to discover for themselves.2
Tomo Savić-Gecan (born 1967 in Zagreb – lives and works in Amsterdam) has participated in numerous exhibitions in Croatia and abroad, including exhibitions at the Kunsthalle Basel, PS1 (New York), Kunsthalle Fridericianum (Kassel), De Appel (Amsterdam), Apexart (New York), Witte de With (Rotterdam), Jeu de Paume (Paris), Kunsthalle Bergen, etc., and major international events including: Manifesta, Venice Biennale and Taipei Biennale.
1 Elena Filipovic, curatorial text for the Croatian Pavillion at the 59th Venice Biennale of Art, 2022
2 An Unsettling Shimmer, Tomislav Medak, 2023