Complex States: 
Art in the year of Brexit
Complex States: Art in the year of Brexit

Date: Sunday 25th June 2017
Time: 10:00~17:00
Location: Room 805 (8F), Building 14, Waseda Campus, Waseda University, 1-6-1 Nishiwaseda

Artists: Wolfgang Tillmans, Pedro Inoue, Keep It Complex, Yuki Higashino, Lucky Bert, Sebastian H-W, Joseph Walsh, Slumgothic Live Collage

The events of the EU referendum in the UK last year (Brexit) contributed significantly to the urgency within discussions of citizenship, nationalism, globalisation and identity in not only the UK and Europe but across the globe. They have also raised the question of what role arts and culture can or should play in these debates.

This exhibition "Complex states: Art in the year of Brexit" will feature artists’ and cultural practitioners’ critical engagements with the events of the EU referendum in Britain. Participating artists will include Wolfgang Tillmans, Pedro Inoue, Yuki Higashino, Keep It Complex, Lucky Bert, Sebastian H-W, Joseph Walsh and Slumgothic Live Collage; with works on display ranging from video and workshops to text, posters, and discussion events.  

The artists Wolfgang Tillmans, Keep It Complex, Lucky Bert, Sebastian H-W and Slumgothic Live Collage all carried out active interventions in the lead up to the EU Referendum through either poster campaigns or community workshops. These will be collated and re-created in this exhibition; including for instance, Sebastian H-W’s HOME_OFFICE “passport” workshop in which participants had an opportunity to design their own passport cover while debating issues of national and cultural identity.

The exhibition will also feature video and installation works by Pedro Inoue, Yuki Higashino, and Joseph Walsh. Although not directly involved in artist campaigns their work offers indirect reflections and refractions concerning the events of Brexit. 

Pedro Inoue’s work in the show explores the ongoing meme wars that inhabit our timelines and our minds. His work takes on both Brexit and the election of President Trump in 2016 as well as the crisis of the democratic/capitalist system and how these crises encroach into our communities, lives and minds.  

Filmed in the UK during the lead up to the EU referendum, Yuki Higashino’s film “Poundbury Horror” centres on Prince Charles’s town of Poundbury; a town that was built in order to recreate a traditional English way of life. In this playful ‘gothic horror’ the town of Poundbury emerges as a model of in Higashino’s words, a “right-wing fantasyland and the progressive’s dystopia” with its white neighbourhoods and the shadows of the reactionary forces that called the town into being.  

Joseph Walsh’s film offers an interpolated response to the events of Brexit by addressing the question of whether or not art practice should respond to cultural and political change. Using choreographed dance and the blurring of animal and human life, the film centres on a subject engaged in physical ‘conditioning’; the form of conditioning that makes us co-operative workers within the capitalist systems we inhabit.  

Offering trans-national and at times, playful narratives and practices concerning the events of Britain’s EU referendum, this exhibition then, intends to trigger discussion around possible gaps in the narratives surrounding Brexit and the “complex states” the referendum provoked. It also aims to engage in dialogues concerning the role of artists, cultural practitioners and academics in areas of citizenship, public policy, and arts activism in response to significant political events.

Alongside artworks, and participatory artist workshops, the exhibition also includes the filmed debate “Brexit, Migration and Communities” that was carried out at the Learning Lab at Community Arts Northwest in the UK earlier this year. 

With thanks to: Community Arts Northwest, Learning Lab, University of York and Counterpoint Arts.

Curator: Catherine Harrington
Curatorial Assistants: Ai Kano, Kat Chetram
Advisor: Vassiliki Tzanakou

Workshops (10:00 – 17:00)
These workshops were carried out in the lead up to the EU Referendum vote last year and will be recreated in this exhibition.
1. Slogan-making and sticker-making workshop (Keep It Complex)
2. Passport-cover making workshop (Sebastian H-W)

Debate (10:00 – 17:00)
We welcome your participation in discussion and debate during the workshops. We will be inviting engagement in debate through the same questions as those that led the filmed debate at Community Arts Northwest in the UK. These questions include:
• What role does art and culture play in a post-referendum landscape?
• How can arts and culture engage with communities experiencing the harsh reality of austerity policies?
• Can arts and culture bring communities together in a time of increasing political and social division?
• How might the arts tap into the deep resilience of communities?
• How can arts and culture inspire communities to build capacity, respond to ongoing challenges and define their own futures?

A participating project work at Cultural Typhoon 2017
場所:〒169-8050 東京都新宿区西早稲田1丁目6−1、早稲田キャンパス14号館805室(8階)

アーティスト: ヴォルフガング・ティルマンス 、ペドロ・イノウエ 、キープ・イット・コンプレックス、東野雄樹 、ラッキーベルト、セバスチャンH-W、ジョセフ・ウォルシュ、スラムゴシックライブコラージュ





ペドロ・イノウエの作品は、私たちの(SNSの)タイムラインと心に潜む、現在進行中のミーム戦争を探究しています。 彼の作品は、2016年のBrexitとトランプ大統領の当選選挙、そして民主主義/資本主義体制といったの危機が、いかにして私たちのコミュニティ、生活人生、そして精神に侵食侵入してくるのか問いかけます。

英国でのEU国民投票の際に撮影された東野由紀監督の映画「Poundbury Horror(パウンドベリーのホラー)」は、チャールズ皇太子の街である、伝統的なイングランドの生活様式を再現再生するために作られたパウンドベリーという街を取り上げます。このこの遊び心のある「ゴシック様式のホラー」とも形容できる作品は遊び心に満ちており、であるパウンドベリーの町を舞台としながらは、白人の多いの隣人反動勢力の影を持つ地域としてと反動的な力の影を持つ、、東野が「右翼のファンタジーとプログレッシブ斬新的なのディストピア(暗黒卿)」と呼ぶ街のモデルとして浮かび上がっています描かれています。



作品展示と参加型のアーティストワークショップのほか、本展で示は、今年初めに英国のコミュニティアーツ・ノースウェストのラーニングラボで行われた映画討論「Brexit、Migration and Communities」も行います。


キュレーター: キャサリン・ハリントン 
キュレトリアル・アシスタント:狩野 愛 、カット・チェトラム
アドバイザー: ヴァシリキ・ツァナコウ 

1.スローガン制作・ステッカー作りワークショップ(Keep It Complex)
2. パスポート製作ワークショップ(セバスチャンH-W)



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