press release

IL TEMPO DEL POSTINO – A GROUP SHOW A co-commission between Manchester International Festival and Théâtre du Châtelet, Paris.

The question becomes... what if having an exhibition is not a way to occupy space, but a way to occupy time...?

Names have been revealed for Il Tempo del Postino – A Group Show, the main visual arts commission for the forthcoming Manchester International Festival.

Co-curated by Hans Ulrich Obrist and Philippe Parreno and directed by Philippe Parreno, Il Tempo del Postino – Group Show will showcase a group of the world’s leading visual artists, comprising Doug Aitken, Matthew Barney and Jonathan Bepler, Tacita Dean, Trisha Donnelly, Olafur Eliasson, Liam Gillick, Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster, Douglas Gordon, Carsten Höller, Pierre Huyghe, Koo Jeong-A, Anri Sala, Tino Sehgal and Rirkrit Tiravanija, with Darius Khondji and Peter Saville who will create a major new experimental time-based group show at the Opera House, Manchester, with the stage assuming the role of the gallery space.

The world premiere and exclusive three UK performances provide the culmination of three years of planning by co-curators Obrist, Parreno and Manchester International Festival.

With up to 15 minutes of ‘exhibition time’, each artist is creating their own distinctive work - inviting guest performing artists, specially commissioned music - but none using film or video - to create this new form of group show.

By focusing on time-based work, this group show aims to redefine how visual arts can be experienced. Set in a theatre, it transforms the established gallery model into an exhilarating, shared audience experience.

The final production will be created collaboratively with all participating artists feeding into the overall structure, assisted by a creative team of experienced theatre practitioners and technicians.

Manchester International Festival further strengthens its association with leading European opera house, Théâtre du Châtelet, Paris, in this second co-commission, following Monkey: Journey to the West. Il Tempo del Postino opens in Paris in February 2008.

“Manchester International Festival is driven by innovation – bringing new ideas and experiences for both the people of Manchester and beyond,” comments Festival Director, Alex Poots. “Il Tempo del Postino – A Group Show cements this ambition, delivering a thought-provoking new visual art event by some of the most famous visual artists alive.”

“The title of the piece relates to my notion of ‘postman time’, and the idea that this exhibition is delivered to the audience rather than the audience walking through it in their own time,” comments Philippe Parreno. “Each episode in the final performance is in some way triggered by the delivery of a new idea from one of the participating artists. We have chosen Italian as it is the language of opera.”

Hans Ulrich Obrist adds, “One of the things that Philippe and I have been discussing since we met each other is what would happen if you have a group show exhibition where each artist would not get space, but each artist would get time? And so that is the point of departure. And through a dialogue with Manchester International Festival – where everything is new – there was a possibility for the first time to actually realise this.”

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Manchester International Festival 2007

Künstler / Mitwirkende: Damon Albarn, Jamie Hewlett, Wladyslaw Szpilman, Peter Guinness, Frederic Chopin, Mikhail Rudy, Neil Bartlett ...

12.07. - 14.07.2007
Il Tempo del Postino, Group Show
A co-commission between Manchester International Festival and Theatre du Chatelet, Paris
Opera House, Manchester
Künstler: Doug Aitken, Matthew Barney / Jonathan Bepler, Tacita Dean, Trisha Donnelly, Olafur Eliasson, Liam Gillick, Dominique Gonzales-Foerster, Douglas Gordon, Carsten Höller, Pierre Huyghe, Koo Jeong-a, Anri Sala, Tino Sehgal / Rirkrit Tiravanija, Darius Khondji, Peter Saville
Kuratoren: Hans Ulrich Obrist, Philippe Parreno