london

Melanie Counsell

Artangel

Under the aegis of a facile appropriation of Foucauldian theory, artists continue to busy themselves with the task of. literally and limply paraphrasing the social history of “site.” In far too many of these well-intentioned esthetico-archaeological projects not even the worthy recovery of a significant, albeit marginalized, past can mitigate their blandness nor justify their numbing effects. With all this in mind I can’t say that I didn’t approach Melanie Counsell’s installation with a great deal of skepticism. Sited in a dank cinema in a working-class neighborhood of London’s East End, the project seemed to be positively awash in social significance. From its inception as a music hall, supporting the type of burlesque entertainment treasured by the Irish and English working classes, to its subsequent refurbishment as a grand cinema, the Coronet’s history is inscribed as a recurring series

Sign-in to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. If you are a subscriber, sign in below.

Not registered for artforum.com? Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW for only $50 a year—65% off the newsstand price—and get the print magazine plus full online access to this issue and our archive.*

Order the PRINT EDITION of the October 1993 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.