This major exhibition will explore how comedy is important in shaping meaning, and how it can help us negotiate the complexities of everyday life.
What we find funny can be cruel and hateful, it can establish symbolic boundaries that divide people into distinct groups, setting those with power against those without and vice-versa. But it is also a way of binding people together; providing consolation, a sense of shared experience and a powerful weapon of resistance.
Double Act will present the multiple forms of the comedic as it is manifest through the experience of contemporary art. Drawing together artists from diverse cultural and political contexts, each of whom share an interest in humour as a resource with which to animate their art practice and connect with an audience, both local and international, this exhibition will explore questions of cultural distinctiveness in an increasingly globalised world.
This project is staged across both the MAC’s galleries, and the galleries at the Bluecoat in Liverpool, with each venue presenting a different line up of artists simultaneously.
The exhibition will be accompanied by a new book, specially designed by Lawn Creative in Liverpool.
The curators, David Campbell and Mark Durden, are founding members of the artists’ group Common Culture. This project stems from explorations in their own work of the comedic impulse within contemporary British culture and is part of the MAC’s Guest Curator Programme.
The exhibition at the Bluecoat runs from 8 April – 19 June 2016, and artists being presented there include Bill Woodrow, Martin Kippenberger, Jonathan Monk, Mel Brimfield, Peter Land, Common Culture, Bank, Gemma Marmalade, Pilvi Takala, Jo Spence and Terry Dennett, Sarah Lucas, Maurice Doherty, Alex Bag, Thomas Geiger, David Sherry, Erica Eyres, Peter Finnemore and Kara Hearn.
Programmed in association with Bluecoat, Liverpool