berlin

“Funky Lessons”

BüroFriedrich

Whenever anyone headed toward the exit during the daily run of “Funky Lessons,” a young woman startled visitors by melodramatically swooning at their feet and, with a faraway gaze, uttering a few cryptic words before quickly rising and returning to the reception desk. She spoke in a monotone of moving “beyond the cul-de-sac of a false choice between harmless hermeticism and patronizing gestures,” a dichotomy that formed the premise of this show organized by German critic and Frieze editor Jörg Heiser. Lifting lines from the show’s press release, Tino Sehgal arranged for the impromptu performances (This Exhibition, 2004) as his artistic contribution. In this vein of comedy clashing with earnestness, Heiser also included twelve other artists who combine humor and didacticism to confront the charge of pedantry frequently leveled against conceptual art.

Even the show’s title—adapted from Adrian

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