ephemeropteræ 2013/03 – Erick Beltrán, Bernardo Ortiz

The third edition of ephemeropteræ 2013 invites the audience to observe artists Erick Beltrán and Bernardo Ortiz engaging in a “wittgensteinian” game of words, definitions, meanings, de-construction and re-construction.
Erick Beltrán und Bernardo Ortiz
 – Game Piece

“Suppose that two people are playing a game. They are playing a game and talking. They are playing a game and talking publicly. Someone might see this and think that they are at a conference. They take things out of a box and talk about images, about lines…”

Erick Beltrán and Bernardo Ortiz play a game with rules that follow the central premise of Ludwig Wittgenstein’s theory and prominent language-game Philosophical Investigations, using the philosopher’s examples as material for their performance Game Piece. In Philosophical Investigations, Wittgenstein discusses the limitations of words having a fixed meaning. The philosopher substitutes this restricting concept of language with an essentially fluent and ever changing “lived reality,” wherein words are not defined by their reference to things but by their use. Game Piece is situated in the space between theory and practice, concept and action but also between graphic and text. Erick Beltrán’s artistic practice analyzes and reflects on discourse constructions and transhistorical knowledge formats. The artist investigates the power that different graphic systems exert on their information distribution, as well as explicit treatment on different conducts and values. Bernardo Ortiz’ current work revolves around the idea of the page “as a space where language and image are in constant conflict”. Thus his works deals with notions of opaqueness, transparency, ineffableness and bluntness, at times rendered literally, at times metaphorically, yet almost always through anachronistic means. Ortiz engages in processes of writing and drawing as a way of exploring the transitory. In Game Piece, which the artists perform together at TBA21–Augarten, they set the stage for a constant change in meaning through transformative gestures, which continuously shift and incorporate the altering nature of reality, referring to its possible implications.

Game Piece
1. Wittgenstein’s use of the word “Bild” suggests that it works more as a model than a purely perceptual phenomena.
2. The examples used in the Philosophical Investigations are also examples of such image/models (Bild).
3. A diagram mapping all of these examples as present in the Philosophical Investigations could be made.
4. This map (hypothetical or not) will become the score for a Conference Piece, [in] which actors will play the part of a lecturer. [And] The map will become a gameboard, giving instructions on language-games to be played.
5. As a result the lectures will vary in form and references each time the mechanism is set in motion.

a. An image (Bild) conceived as a diagram incorporates the changing nature of the reality it is in relation to.
b. Diagrams are efficient tools to visualize processes in their more basic gestures.
b1. Gestures are here the building blocks of processes.
c. These gestures can be seen as [the] flow of energy in transformation, ideological movements which migrate a form, an arrangement, a certain group of rules into another.
d. This relation of forces can take the form of images or models which, as a set of rules, relations or orders can be read as a score or as a set of instructions in a game.
e. This project has no pretension to produce theory or even give an interpretation of Wittgenstein's theory of Language Games but to play with it.

Erick Beltrán (born 1974 in Mexico City) works with diverse formats such as the multiple or the book, installation and lecture-performance. Recent exhibitions include Parque Cultural Valparaiso (Chile), MACBA (Barcelona), Qalandia International (Palestine), Taipei Biennial 2012 (Taipei), CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts (San Francisco), The Tropenmuseum (Amsterdam), Manifesta 8 (Murcia).

Bernardo Ortiz' (born 1972 in Bogotá, Colombia) artistic practice revolves around writing and drawing. He lives and works in Bogotá and holds a BFA degree from the Universidad de los Andes in Bogotá and an MA in Philosophy from the Universidad del Valle in Cali. Recent exhibitions include São Paulo Bienal (Brazil), Lyon Biennale (France). 
June 28, 2013 from 7 pm
Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary
TBA21–Augarten, Scherzergasse 1A, 1020 Vienna, Austria
Supported by
Wiener Städtische Versicherungsverein
curated by
Daniela Zyman and Boris Ondreička
Free admission