Monkey see, Monkey do, 2010
Christian Andersson / Maja Borg / Tamar Guimarães / Emma Kay / Runo Lagomarsino / Laibach / Ilias Papailiakis / Juan Pérez Agirregoikoa / Magnus Thierfelder / Ylva Westerlund
Curated by Anna Johansson, Emma Reichert, Elena Tzotzi / Tetriss Produktion
September 17th - January 23rd
Social norms and codes indicate the established and approved way of doing things, regulate behaviour and act as an informal system of social control. Norms evolve through time and vary between religions, cultures and societies, although certain fundamental values have been considered constant throughout the history of mankind. And yet, the paradox is that these values have continuously been overruled in the name of what is claimed to be common universal principles such as freedom, equality, justice and democracy.
The subject matter of the exhibition Monkey See Monkey Do revolves around the complex mechanisms that cause a discrepancy between how we think and how we act and engage with issues embedded in the realm of ethics and everyday dilemmas. A central question that is raised throughout the exhibition is whether and to which extent we have a choice, or if we are in a constant unreflecting status quo of "monkey see, monkey do" - an expression that refers to the act of imitation without an actual understanding or questioning of the reason behind the action.
Monkey See Monkey Do develops like a trail of thought between the art works that jointly, and in conversation with each other, unfold a narrative that explores the various ways in which we respond to the rules, beliefs and attitudes that affect and regulate our lives. Political ideas, scientific goals, religious convictions, legal systems, education and family are some examples of social institutions that can easily turn into tools of oppression when understood as a homogenous entity, instead of a manifold set of values.