Anton Vidokle

USA (1965). Lives and works in New York. and MEX. Lives and works in New York and Berlin.

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Plaza de los Coches
Geometría Popular
2003 Installation. Newsstand and newspaper

Of all the social uses of modernist abstraction, none is as contentious as public art. It has been called the last bastion of modernist controversy. Anton Vidokle and Julieta Aranda show what happens when this sort of abstract, utopic, and ideal geometry is projected onto the social/public space via a tabloid called Popular Geometry, initially conceived and build for an exhibition in October, 2003 at the Platform Garanti Contemporary Art Center of Istanbul. Reprinting a selection of responses to this newspaper about abstract public sculpture—“plop art” as it was scornfully referred to in the eighties—Popular Geometry is a chronicle of disassembling and friction, of a language where meaning has mostly vanished and been lost in translation and that consequently has turned into a circus in which signs and gestures parody its meaning.

Through the construction of a newsstand and the publication of a new edition of the project for the Cartagena Biennial, Popular Geometry becomes the backdrop of this circus with a largely negative reach (also inadvertently funny) that includes articles from the last three decades, as well as becoming a cut-out, DIY, paper sculpture insert within which a complex dance between art and politics, culture and ideology, form and function is staged.