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Martha Rosler at Portikus

Martha Rosler location, location, location
Portikus Alte Brücke 2 / Maininsel D-60594 Frankfurt am
Main Opening: July 11, 2008, 8 pm
Lecture: July 11, 2008, 6.30 pm
Exhibition on view: July 12 - September 14, 2008
Press conversation: July 11, 2008, 11 am

Since the late sixties, Martha Rosler has commented on current events and socially relevant issues in caustically critical but also humorous works. With a keen eye for the stuff of everyday life and for social conventions, Rosler deconstructs, layer for layer, today's "mythologies." Martha Rosler has created seminal work in the fields of photography, installation, performance, video, and writing; she is also the author of influential critical and theoretical essays. She is not bound by any specific medium and deploys those methods and strategies that seem to her adequate to the individual issue she seeks to address. She thus deliberately uses a language familiar to many and does not shy away even from the burlesque mode. Prominent objects of Rosler's poignant analysis and dry humor has been the role of the mass media, especially in times of war. Another central aspect to Martha Rosler's oeuvre is her critical engagement of the urban structures in which we live , as the sites of our everyday experience, and their social implications. For her show at the Portikus, as for documenta 12 and for last year's Skulpturen Projekte Münster, Martha Rosler has designed an exhibition situation motivated by site-specific features. Following the principle of montage, she examines various aspects that compose, in both a historical and a contemporary perspective, the image of the city of Frankfurt as a metropolis of trade. The exhibition begins at the exhibition site itself, the Old Bridge, as a trading route of historic importance; continues with the history of the former Jewish ghetto, the Judengasse; and then turns to the banking district, which symbolizes the center of European finance. Martha Rosler pursues the question: which components make up the "branding" of a city such as Frankfurt? One commonplace asks "What are the three most important things to look for when choosing a building site?"—and answers: "Location, location, location." Portikus Director: Daniel Birnbaum Curator: Melanie Ohnemus