Oliver Ressler, Emergency Turned Upside-Down, 2016, film stilll,theAgency., 2017
Oliver Ressler, The Bull Laid Bear, HD film, 24 min., 2012, film still
Oliver Ressler, Property is Theft, Banner
Bedtime for Democracy
1 March– 29 April 2017
theAgency. Gallery is pleased to present the first solo exhibition of works by the Austrian artist Oliver Ressler in London. The artist will be present at the preview. The exhibition title Bedtime for Democracy is inspired by a Dead Kennedys album title from 1986. Thirty years on it rings true in our context of a shift to a post-democratic era and a deep crisis of neoliberal capitalism. Ressler’s exhibition brings together photographic works, films and site-specific pieces addressing migration, citizenship, democracy, and capital. The works document and observe a variety of grassroots movements and witness and explore the terminology and structure of capitalist realism. The gallery will host a number of public discussions during the exhibition.
Under the heading ‘ Who are we? ‘, we invite to communal reflections on how we experience and influence society, economics and politics with speakers such as Stephanie Polsky (11 March), Aminat Lawal-Agoro and Alinta Sara (25th March), Mike Watson ( 29 April).
In addition, from 24th January to 26th March 2017 Oliver Ressler and Dario Azzellini’s film Occupy, Resist, Produce – Officine Zero (2015) will be presented at Zilkha Auditorium at Whitechapel Gallery in the framework of Artists' Film International.
Oliver Ressler (b. 1970 in Knittelfeld in Austria) lives and works in Vienna. His multimedia works and film pieces cover issues such as global capitalism, forms of resistance, social alternatives, racism and global warming. His work constantly attempts to blur the boundaries between art and activism
He was awarded the Prix Thun for Art and Ethics in 2016 and recently completed a solo exhibition at SALT, istanbu, curated by Vasif Kortun.
Many of Ressler’s works have been realized in collaborations: “Boom!” focuses on the central contradictions of globalized capitalism (with David Thorne), “European Corrections Corporation” on the phenomenon of prison privatization (with Martin Krenn), and “What Would It Mean To Win?” on the protests against the 33rd G8-summit in Heiligendamm (with Zanny Begg). Ressler also produced the films “Venezuela from Below”, 2004 and “5 Factories–Worker Control in Venezuela”, 2006, which was presented as a 6-channel video installation at the Berkeley Art Museum, USA.
Oliver Ressler has participated in more than 150 exhibition. In 2002, Ressler’s video “This is what democracy looks like!” won the 1st prize of the International Media Art Award of the ZKM. , H ehas participated in the biennials in Prague, 2005; Seville, 2006; Moscow, 2007 and Taipei, 2008. For the Taipei Biennial 2008 Ressler also curated the exhibition "A World Where Many Worlds Fit" on the counter-globalization movement.