How do you discover information about the world around you, what’s your method for watching history unfold? If you keep your finger on the pulse of current affairs by watching the news or reading the paper, then you’ll surely be intrigued by Corrections to the First Draft of History. In a time when our understanding of contemporary events is coloured by the lens of mainstream media outlets, it’s more important than ever to consider how and why history seems perpetually in danger of repeating itself.
Raqs Media Collective, Sarai
Delhi-based Raqs Media Collective, otherwise known as Jeebesh Bagchi, Monica Narula and Shuddhabrata Sengupta, cannot merely be described as ‘artists’. They have under their belts the roles of curators, technological designers, media experts and social commentators. Since starting Sarai, their centre for the study of developing societies, they have risen to become India’s foremost media collective, sparking social change both internationally and within local communities.
Frith Street, London
The most prominent piece of work in their exhibition at Frith Street is Re-Run (2013), a video installation inspired by a photograph taken by Henri Cartier-Bresson in pre-communist China. The original image, taken in 1948 during the impending storm of the People’s Liberation Army, shows a jostling queue of people outside a bank desperately struggling to withdraw their money and buy gold before the financial collapse. This mass response itself facilitated economic catastrophe, a message that RAQS media collective makes central to their exhibition.
Also featured is a selection of British and international newspapers with sections obliterated with paint, leaving swathes of text illegible. The message is a playful commentary on how we encounter history as it is written, but only in snippets, revisions and omissions rather than in its entirety.
|Raqs Media Collective: Corrections to the First Draft of History, Frith Street Gallery
|Frith Street Gallery, 17-18 Golden Square, London, W1F 9JJ | MAP
|Piccadilly Circus (underground)
19 Sep 14 – 31 Oct 14, 12:00 AM
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