• A sense of becoming and alienation: the retrospective in the work of Jordan McKenzie.

      Bartram, Angela; University of Derby; School of Arts, College of Arts, Humanities and Education, University of Derby, Derby, UK (Taylor and Francis, 15/08/2018)
      The act of art retrospective, specifically that placed within a museum or gallery, is to reflect on, and give knowledge of something past. Retroactive in its overview of an artist’s practice, it is inherently backwards facing rather than future focused. As an act that specifies finiteness and conclusion, a living artist’s retrospective produces an ananomaly. In 2016, I simultaneously staged the Alternative Document symposium and exhibition. This included Retrospective 2027 by Jordan McKenzie, an event set in the future and staged by a living artist. Positioned as a keynote in the symposium rather than the exhibition it not only offered the retrospective as a representation of the artworks of the living, but also challenged traditional formats of structural placement. Situated within colloquialism rather than exhibition, the aim was to set it adrift from the gallery to open it to critical analysis and debate. This essay considers McKenzie’s approach to retrospective and how it differs from the conventional. Including my critical conversation with the artist, his performed, gestural and event-based approach is discussed for how it differs from the regular model of exhibition. The essay discusses the implications for the documentation of performance and the retrospective in McKenzie’s work.