Would you class the book as an exhibition catalogue or is it designed to be more of a standalone publication?
As stated above, Home Economics the book can function entirely independently since it doesn’t just represent or record the exhibition.
On the other hand, the book is part of a layered experience. The exhibition contains almost no wall text, which is provided instead in a small pamphlet. Someone with no knowledge could enter and grasp certain aspects from their time in the spaces alone; another person might read the pamphlet and have a deeper understanding of the themes and the works; and a third, armed with the book, would be able to fully understand the research, complexity and ambitions of the exhibition.
Can you tell us a bit about the concept behind the series of artworks which were created with Matthieu Lavanchy?
The artworks also capture the everyday – they depict uncanny images of contemporary domestic life; images that seem normal at first, but which challenge expectations, disrupt normality, or startle. These have been combined with blunt, polemic statements, which produce a provocative friction. The German word for uncanny, “unheimlich”, means the unfamiliar within the home. It is the strange and alienating within the familiar. Pitched somewhere between observation and political slogan, the short text is usually somewhat dissonant with its paired image, allowing the viewer to make critical projections of their own.
Based on themes such as sharing space; money, debt and stress; forbidden and secret acts; and infrastructure and privacy, the artworks intended to prime viewers to the complex themes of the exhibition. They appear in the exhibition, catalogue and merchandise as well as in the press campaign.
What’s next for OK-RM?
We continue our work with institutions and artists, and are currently working on multiple projects including a project for The Design Museum, the identity for jewellery label Patcharavipa that launches this fall and books with artists Shezad Dawood and Fos. A thrilling outcome of the work process of Home Economics was the realisation that a partnership of REAL Foundation (Jack Self), Hesselbrand and OK-RM could offer an interesting proposition to clients. We continue to collaborate and have already realised another project together…
Home Economics, the British Pavilion at the Venice Architecture Biennale, commissioned by the British Council. Catalogue published by The Spaces – buy your copy here.