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"The Way Up and the Way Down are One and the Same"
2002-11-29 until 2003-03-29
Yam Lau: An Exhibition in a Home
Toronto, ON,

The Way Up and the Way Down are One and the Same is an exhibition in a Home conceived by Yam Lau. New works and editions are presented by Yvonne Lammerich, Gordon Lebredt, Adrian Blackwell, Garry Madlung, Brian Groombridge, Yam Lau, Stephanie Shepherd, and Nestor Kruger.

"In November 2002, the second year into The Way Up and the Way Down are One and the Same, I plan to present the project. The presentation will extend into early spring of 2003.  This is also the first time the project is presented in winter.    

"The new presentation will open around dusk, with the only sources of light in my home are two monitors, lanterns and other works that project light. The art works should be revealed slowly, without their presence being declarative, under diffused and weakened lighting conditions.

"Is it possible I ask, to release art from the demand of exhibition, and of a spectacle?  The prefix ex in ex-hibition presupposes that, in order for the work to be announced as work, it is to stand away, somewhat abstracted from the sources that sustained it. Community and life are two such sources. Such "abstraction" may be the present social condition of art and its dissemination. Its operation can be compared to a restricted and focused light projected on art, delimiting it as an already fulfilled spectacle.  

"But there are other possibilities for art.  I ask:  is it possible to project light, and thus to illuminate art, in a way that corresponds to the light that emanates from it?  I think art projects a weak light, because art is ontologically weak.

"In a space animated by a weakened light -

"I think of a shimmering - A continuous inflection between the older works already installed, the new works and the space.

"I think of the dissolution of defined territories. Perhaps, under a soft and weak light, we may give up declarations for the role of the curator, artists, gallery, and the territories assigned to each.   

"I think of a different kind of responsibility, rhythm, and harmony, a different kind of production and presentation space.  

"I think of a space that is rhythmic and affective.

"The Way Up and the Way Down are One and the Same is not regulated by a theme. Yet with each new presentation, the original motivations of the project - to be independent from the art world, its ritual and protocol, to make art accountable for life - find new expression.  

"The project is not polemical in spirit. Nor does it  agree to spectacles, the consumption of spectacles, and a community defined by spectacles alone.  Its presence is measured by perseverance, friendship and transformations.

"On a more personal note, I have discovered much by spending time with your work during the past year. It is now difficult for me to imagine living otherwise, or elsewhere. Often, when I travel, I find  myself missing my home and your work. The potential of the space becomes even more evident in time. Yet, the greatest pleasures of the project have been working with you and sharing your works with visitors. With the new presentation, the project will announce its first incarnation as a bookwork of the same title. The book enables the project to be independent from its physical site so that it may implicate other spaces and possibilities. Adrian Blackwell's pinhole photographs of the apartment will appear on the dust jacket of the book. The photographs, presenting the overall space of the apartment, make the spirit of the project legible. The website www.wayupwaydown.com will also continue to grow as an integral part of the project."

-- Yam Lau


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