A retrospective exhibition of Sašo Sedlaček’s work entitled Supertrash will open at the Koroška Gallery of Fine Arts in Slovenj Gradec on 11 November 2011. The exhibition will bring together for the first time the most distinctive of Sedlaček’s projects created over the past 10 years. A retrospective catalogue featuring texts by Dr. Petja Grafenauer and Dr. Luka Omladič and designed by Studiobotas will accompany the exhibition.
Photo: Tomo Jeseničnik
“Do hairs, dirt, excrement, all these ‘vile and worthless’ things, have an idea of their own? What to do with all these unseemly and rejected things – with all this waste? How could we possibly treat them equally? This is Socrates’s abyss, a refuse pit in fact, from which he diverts his gaze and which he would prefer to leave alone exactly where it is. But this is impossible, Parmenides reminds him. In some sense, wisdom begins precisely with waste; Socrates will have matured philosophically once he is able to reflect upon waste.” (Luka Omladič)
The exhibition Supertrash features the projects Picnic on a Dump (Piknik na deponiji), Beggar (Žicar), Urban – woodenware vending machine (Urban – Avtomat za suho robo), Space Junk Spotting (Vesoljske smeti), The Ex, No Lego, Just Do It!, AcDcWc, The Big Switch Off (Veliki izklop) and others, all of which demonstrate Sašo Sedlaček’s ability to reflect upon waste. Moreover, regardless of whether he deals with recycling faeces or analogue televisual waves, waste remains the key topic of Sedlaček’s oeuvre.
“It is very clear where the interest of Sašo Sedlaček’s art works lies. Recycling. (Re)use of the rejected. The improvement of the world and a warning that people in the West are not the only inhabitants of this planet. His projects shift between local and global problems of waste. The artist is interested in topical themes that fall into the category of the age-old efforts to improve human life. Fortunately, he does not tackle these issues in a naïve, bigoted or moralistic manner, but rather with humour and incentive. His ideas are witty, creative and, above all, useful. I wonder why Ribnica has not yet started producing the Urban – woodenware vending machine. We should not be surprised at all if, in a few years, while strolling around BTC City – Ljubljana may well be just one of its districts by then – we happen upon a pricey lavatory that produces its own lighting, which is something that Sedlaček has already shown us with his AcDcWc lavatories.” (Petja Grafenauer)
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sašo Sedlaček is, no doubt, one of the key figures of contemporary art in Slovenia. He has received several awards (OHO, Vida 11, Spaport, Zogo Toy, etc.); he has been an artist-in-residence three times (in Germany, Japan and the United States); he has had exhibitions in Slovenia, Japan, Taiwan, the USA, Austria, France, Belgium, Italy, Serbia, Russia, Estonia, etc. – including established exhibition venues such as the Secession in Vienna and the Lentos Museum in Linz – and he has participated in major international biennials (Taipei, Taiwan 2008 and Ogaki, Japan 2006) and festivals.
His project The Big Switch Off was just on display at the Project Space Aksioma in Slovenia. He has recently problematised the sell-out of frequency space (Manifesto, 2008, and Infocalypse Now!, 2007) and he is particularly recognisable for his interventions into consumer Meccas: using bricks made of printed advertising materials, he closed the entrances to department stores in Ljubljana (Just Do It!, 2003) and built a pavilion for eavesdropping and dwelling in BTC City (Loop, 2004); in 2006, he took the Beggar – a robot for the materially deprived, which he lent to the homeless people of Ljubljana the following year – for a walk around Citypark and the streets of Tokyo and Taipei; etc.