Curators Signatures

Version 2 (Extract)


Computer animation / projection
Duration: 5 mins 16 secs
Dimensions variable

Curator’s Signatures (digital film) is one of a series of art works focusing on the hand written signatures of curators the artists have worked or corresponded with over 40 years. Taken from their own archive the collection ranges from young curators at the beginning of their careers to established and internationally prominent figures. Most of the curators are living, although some are now deceased. As email and electronic communications continue to replace the letter and signature Curator’s Signatures is an historical record of individual characters by their own hand, as well as a reflection on the current time.

Traditionally the artist’s signature has functioned as a cipher for authenticity and a unique creative personality. Curator’s Signatures explores the increasing prominence of the curator as a creative individual by presenting a collection of the signatures as objects of beauty and contemplation. In some senses the conventional relationship between the artist and the curator is reversed as the curators are brought together as a group for consideration. The signatures vary widely, from the prosaic to the aesthetic, from extravagant flourishes and abstract gestures to deliberate and precisely executed marks. In each case one gains the impression of an individual personality distilled to it’s essence.

Since the early 1980s Langlands & Bell have regularly examined the role of the museum in their art. In their sculptures, books and films they have engaged with the architecture, history and culture of the institution to explore how we think about and use museums. More recently the artists have made digital animations, and innovative virtual worlds that reflect on museums today and the many ways in which their role is continually renewed.

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