Donelle Woolford. Photo: Namik Minter and Frank Heath.


“Double Agent”

ICA - Institute of Contemporary Arts, London
The Mall
February 14–April 6, 2008

Curated by Claire Bishop and Mark Sladen

Despite the title, put aside thoughts of espionage. In the sense intended by the ICA's Mark Sladen and guest curator Claire Bishop—who has written eloquently on participatory aeshetics for this magazine and elsewhere—“double agent” instead connotes “doubled agency.” Reflecting the thematic hook of “art in which the artist uses other people as a medium,” this exhibition will be a roll call of key players: Pawel Althamer, Phil Collins, Dora García, Joe Scanlan, Barbara Visser, Artur Zmijewski, and theatrical firebrand Christoph Schlingensief—and behind them, a shadow squad of auxiliary producers. Expect the most sociable of shows, then; but beyond foregrounding an increasingly decentered approach to artmaking, “Double Agent” will likely be a stringent look at the ethical responsibilities (and questions of representation) that arise when the artist refuses to go it alone.