Mark Manders: Traducing Ruddle

Co-published by Fillip Editions and Roma Publications, Amsterdam, Traducing Ruddle is the fifth in a series of “fake” newspapers by Dutch artist Mark Manders. Using a nonsensical combination of English words, Traducing Ruddle creates a pretense of legibility that dissolves upon closer inspection. The newspaper is supplemented by Two Connected Houses, a 48 page insert developed in conjunction with the exhibition Contemplating the Void: Interventions in the Guggenheim Museum.

Manders’ newspaper will be distributed for free through a half dozen newspaper boxes in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside during the months of February and March. Outside of Vancouver, Traducing Ruddle is available for purchase directly from Fillip, as well as from Roma Publications, Amsterdam, and Motto Distribution, Berlin. Subscribers to Fillip magazine will receive Manders’ publication free of charge.

Sheets from Manders’ Traducing Ruddle form the central element of the artist’s Window with Fake Newspapers project, a site-specific public work on view through March 28th. Commissioned by Fillip in collaboration with the City of Vancouver, Window with Fake Newspapers occupies the façade of 20 East Hastings Street, Vancouver—the former location of The Only Sea Foods, which operated as a restaurant since 1916 until it was closed this past summer due to health and drug infractions. In stark contrast to the generally turgid public art that dominates Vancouver’s current Olympic landscape, Window with Fake Newspapers utilizes a subtle fictive language to recast The Only Sea Foods as a site of both opacity and exchange. The work is part of Manders’ ongoing Self Portrait as a Building, a project the artist began in 1986.

Manders’ publication and installation provides an entry point for an in depth investigation into the complex relationship between art and public space explored in a special issue of Fillip magazine, forthcoming this summer. Set against the context of the 2010 Olympics, Fillip #12 will investigate the multiple relationships between contemporary art and its publics—extending beyond discussions of a narrowly defined space of public art toward what critic Sven Lütticken calls art’s essential role in producing “critical forms of publicness.” (from Fillip site)

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