Bits: 04.04.11

Suruchi Dumpawar, Sarangpur Vegetable Market

• Photographer Suruchi Dumpawar's "Sites of Terror" examines the "banality of terrorism" through straightforward documentation of sites of serial bombs in Ahmedabad, India, that killed 50 people in 2008. She writes:
"I was not in Ahmedabad when the bomb blasts happened, and when I visited the city a few months later it was as if all these sites had been invisibilised from me. As I crossed a busy square one day as I had crossed it numerous times before on foot, I noticed a memorial, which on careful reading revealed the names of the people who had died in the serial blasts. The memorial was so perfectly ensconced in its surroundings, with a few benches placed in front of it having become a regular haunt for men from the nearby shops that used the place for their discussions. This conversion and adaptation of a terrorized site and memorial into the everyday rituals of a busy street interested me."
• Similarly, Raphaël Dallaporta -- whose portraits of antipersonnel mines I featured last week -- has created a series of photos that appear banal at first glance but document hidden horror. Domestic Slavery pairs photos of ordinary-looking Parisian buildings with Ondine Millot's texts about modern-day slavery in our midst.

• Chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei -- who in the past has been detained and beaten by Chinese authorities, who also razed his studio -- is missing after being again detained by police. Authorities took some 30 computers and hard drives from his North Beijing studio, The Guardian reports. Ai's wife, Lu Qing, said police "asked me about Ai Weiwei's work and the articles he posted online ... I told them that everything that Ai did was very public, and if they wanted to know his opinions and work they could just look at the internet." Ai has long been outspoken about corruption by Chinese officials. His studio is currently occupied by police.

• A Redditer says this is an "imitation Banksy" in Minneapolis (not all figurative stencil pieces are Banksyesque, in my book), so I'll call this -- from the blog at Behind Bars, my neighborhood bike shop -- an imitation Barry McGee.

• In Absentee Landlord, starting June 11, the legendary John Waters does an intervention at the Walker Art Center by inserting 60 works from the permanent collection into the Event Horizon exhibition. He writes at the Walker blogs:
Can artwork sexually attract each other? Does minimalism make pop horny? Does pornography elevated to high art lose its erotic power? Does size matter or can a tiny joke compete with a maximalist icon? Can art ever be “funny” without losing academic enthusiasm? Would Fischli/Weiss and Roman Signer fight over who’s more droll? More Swiss? And even more importantly, if all these works had to live together would Carl Andre ever be able to laugh?
• Minneapolis event: Bruce High Quality Foundation + Creative Time present "Teach 4 Amerika: A Rally for Anarchy in Arts Education," Saturday, Apr. 9, U of M's Regis Center for Art.

Secrets of the City does a studio visit with Minneapolis artist Terrence Payne, who has a show opening Apr. 16 at Rosalux.

What's in Prince's fridge?

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