Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA)
02 Sep 1995 to 03 Dec 1995
Imants Tillers, Georg Baselitz, Joseph Beuys, Bernhard Blume, Carlo Carra, Giorgio de Chirico, Mike Kelley, Vytautas Landsbergis, Colin McCahon, Unto Pusa, Arnulf Rainer, Nicholas Roerich, Isidore Tillers
This exhibition took the large-scale painting Diaspora (1992) by Imants Tillers as the starting point for an exploration of the complex processes in his work and its relationship to a broader art context. Tillers’ creative practice was revealed by presenting this work together with its sources in works by other artists.
Tillers borrows images from various sources, such as international art magazines and catalogues, merging images by artists he greatly admires, whilst also incorporating sources specific to his Latvian heritage. In doing so he mixes systems of meaning in works which have an often resistant, wilful character of rupture, dispersal, splicing and re-formation. Tillers forms entirely new contexts for the images he uses, showing that they have no essentialist meaning, and that all images are open to re-reading and re-contextualisation.
Tillers produced Diaspora (1992) in response to the unexpected collapse of communism in Latvia in 1991. The work was designed to be shown either as a complete whole, or separated into individual panels as a series of paintings, an exhibition. Rather than presenting a retrospective of his twenty-year career, Tillers’ recontextualised Diaspora for the MCA, assembling it into a single work of art and exhibiting it alongside relevant works from 1989-1995 which led the way to and evolved from Diaspora. The whole exhibition, therefore, was a powerful comment on the collapse of communism in Latvia and the resulting social change.
Organised by Pori Art Museum, Finland.