Becoming a Book:
Quis Erudiet Without Documenta

Salt Galata

April 15, 2016 19.00

SALT Galata, Workshop II-III

Following One, No One and One Hundred Thousand at SALT Galata in 2013, a publication containing a selection of his photographs has been published by SALT, in collaboration with Mousse Publishing and Grazer Kunstverein.

Housed in his basement in Istanbul, Montanari’s extensive archive spans fifty years of independent production working with chemical photography. At the core of his practice is a desire to capture the beauty inherent within the image of labor. This is particularly evident in his photographs of hundreds of artists producing, installing and rehearsing their works for major art events and exhibitions around the world. Montanari pursued this area of interest from the early 1980s up until 2005, until a more professionalised and capitalist art world began to frown upon independent access, often capturing intimate moments shared with artists as they formed their work supported by assistants, curators and their peers.

The publication Quis Erudiet Without Documenta opens with responses to Montanari’s work by Catherine David, Pier Paolo Calzolari and Donna Ferrato. The photographic content ranges in scope to include images taken during the production of the exhibitions Ouverture (1984), Magiciens de la Terre (1989), Metropolis (1991), and others that were evidently significant at the time, but seemed to have dropped off the map of art history, such as Casino Fantasma (1990). There are also images of rehearsals for major performative works, such as Claes Oldenburg, Coosje van Bruggen and Frank O. Gehry’s The Course of the Knife (1985), and Matthew Barney’s production of OTTOshaft (1992) at documenta IX. Additionally, Montanari’s long-standing relationships with particular art world characters allows for a perspective on Pier Paolo Calzolari’s installation of his exhibition at Castello di Rivoli in 1994, the inclusion of a portrait section, and a homage to James Lee Byars.

Designed by Marc Hollenstein. Co-published by SALT, Robinson Crusoe 389