Katie Hood Morgan

When Attitudes Became Form Become Attitudes
CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Art, San Francisco
September 13 - December 15, 2012

Museum of Contemporary Art, Detroit
February 1 - March 31, 2013

The Wattis’ exhibition When Attitudes Became Form Become Attitudes takes the history of Conceptual art as its starting point. Based on and mirroring, in many ways, the 1969 exhibition Live In Your Head: When Attitudes Become Form (Works – Concepts – Processes – Situations – Information) presented at the Kunsthalle Bern in Switzerland and curated by Harald Szeemann, When Attitudes Became Form Become Attitudes includes over 80 contemporary artists who work within the lineage, language, and shadows of Conceptual art of the past.

Mostly known by its short title, When Attitudes Become Form was an exhibition that brought together new tendencies in the art of its time, known today as post-Minimalism, Arte Povera, Land art and Conceptual art. Although the artists and works included came from diverse points of view, the exhibition did not attempt to assimilate these varying approaches into a singular narrative; rather it allowed the disparities and differences in the artists that were selected to hold and approached these works in terms of a shifting relationship between the artist and artwork, one in which the activity and process of the artist was now prioritized above that of the medium.

Harald Szeemann’s 1969 exhibition has become one of the most legendary shows of the recent past. While the exhibition has since been discussed, researched and examined in a wider range of essays, books and conferences, an investigation into its history and impact has never before been realized in the format of an exhibition. With this exhibition, the Wattis will take on the history and the myths around When Attitudes Become Form by bringing together a large group of international contemporary artists that follow, in a number of ways, the legacy of Conceptual art. Just as the original exhibition allowed for a diversity in material approaches, artistic voice, and process, When Attitudes Became Form Become Attitudes collects a diverse array of contemporary artworks, reflecting the continuing vitality of experimentation that is present in the work of contemporary artists.

Allowing for the creative interrelation between historical documents and representations of Szeemann’s original exhibition and contemporary works of art, When Attitudes Became Form Become Attitudes considers When Attitudes Become Form as a living past, enlivening and re-imagining its legacy in the contemporary moment.

Curated by Jens Hoffmann
Assistant curators Katie Hood Morgan and Liz Glass

Participating artists include:

Zarouhie Abdalian, Pablo Accinelli, Jennifer Allora and Guillermo Calzadilla, Jonathas de Andrade, Kathryn Andrews, Nazgol Ansarinia, Nicolás Bacal, Christopher Badger, Alessandro Balteo Yazbeck, Yto Barrada, Taysir Batniji, James Beckett, Nina Beier, Walead Beshty, Cezary Bodzianowski, Matthew Buckingham, Johanna Calle, Arabella Campbell, Juan Capistran, Etienne Chambaud, Marcelo Cidade, Claire Fontaine, Nicolás Consuegra, Abraham Cruzvillegas, Alexandre da Cunha, Mariana Castillo Deball, Maria Eichhorn, Michael Elmgreen and Ingar Dragset, Cevdet Erek, Annika Eriksson, Lara Favaretto, Aurélien Froment, Simon Fujiwara, Meschac Gaba, Dani Gal, Ryan Gander, Mario Garcia Torres, João Maria Gusmão and Pedro Paiva, Alexander Gutke, Jeppe Hein, Emily Jacir, Maryam Jafri, Alicja Kwade, Luisa Lambri, Adriana Lara, Tim Lee, Mateo López, Renata Lucas, Marie Lund, Kris Martin, Vincent Meessen, Simon Dybbroe Møller, Jonathan Monk, Shahryar Nashat, Roman Ondák, Fernando Ortega, Christodolous Panayiotou, Nicolás Paris, Pratchaya Phinthong, Amalia Pica, Kirsten Pieroth, Wilfredo Prieto, Meriç Algün Ringborg, Nicolás Robbio, Will Rogan, Pamela Rosenkranz, Fabrice Samyn, Kim Schoenstadt, Tino Sehgal, Sean Snyder, Mark Soo, Mateo Tannatt, Ron Terada, Hank Willis Thomas, Jan Timme, Clarissa Tossin, Guido van der Werve, Natasha Wheat, and Akram Zaatari.