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'21st Century: Art in the First Decade' is an exhibition, publication, blog and series of public programs at the Queensland Art Gallery l Gallery of Modern Art that explore the art of the past ten years. As an expanded platform for the exhibition, the '21st Century Blog' functions as a source book of reference material and contributions provided by artists, curators and writers. Read more

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2005.110_005_filmstill

Aernout Mik | Pulverous 2003 (still) | Three-channel video installation on video server: 23:27 minutes (looped), colour, silent on rear projection screen embedded into temporary wall Purchased 2005. The Queensland Government’s Gallery of Modern Art Acquisitions Fund | Collection: Queensland Art Gallery

Aernout Mik ‘Pulverous’ 2003

The scenario we witness in Pulverous does not conform to conventional patterns of behaviour; however, the actions are strangely recognisable. In fact, as with many other pieces by Mik, we can register sympathies between certain types of actions portrayed in his work and scenes that we regularly witness in the media. For example, in viewing Pulverous, writer Dominic van den Boogerd was reminded of the television images of social upheaval in Buenos Aires during the currency crisis of the late 1990s. The portrayal of violent actions in the media as spectacle (without communicating the underlying social context) is strangely mirrored in Mik’s scenarios, in which motivation and intention are forever absent. The footage in Pulverous is looped in such a way that the viewer has no awareness of the beginning or end of the scenario. Projected across a large panoramic screen the destructive scene appears to continue indefinitely creating what critic Daniel Birnbaum has described as an ‘elastic’ form of time forever caught in the present.

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