Port City: on mobility and exchange
Exhibition 26 June – 24 August 2008
Yto Barrada, Ursula Biemann, Meschac Gaba, Melanie Jackson and Erik van Lieshout.
Port City is an international cross-artform touring project, addressing issues of global migration, trade and contemporary slavery.
Traditionally ports have been seen as gateways to a wider world, representing a point of contact and exchange with different countries and cultures, facilitating the movement of people as well as goods and ideas. However in an era of globalisation, port cities have ceased to have such territorial allegiances, becoming simply trading points on a worldwide network. The works by the artists in this exhibition explore the idea idea of a port city as a symbolic site of cultural exchange.
Several works in the exhibition and screening programme draw attention to the experience of migration, in particular between North Africa and the Mediterranean. Ursula Biemann presents Sahara Chronicle a video installation focusing on migration routes and also curates a screening programme of artists’ moving image works and documentary films that will be shown throughout the exhibition.
The exhibition also includes a video presented in a giant pillbox by Erik van Lieshout, an installation made in response to the media and looting frenzy that resulted from the wreck of the MSC Napoli by Melanie Jackson, and a vast model of a global cityscape made from sugar by Meschac Gaba, to which an iconic Liverpool building will be added during the course of the exhibition.