A video with short clips of various performances from the project Exchange Rate: 2008.
To view the complete online project please visit: www.exchangerate2008.com
Participants in the exchange acknowledged the significance of the election and sought ways to process, collaborate and examine the historic moment. Artist participants lived in Australia, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Ecuador, Israel, Lithuania, Mexico, Nicaragua, Portugal, Scotland, South Korea, Ukraine, the United Kingdom and the USA. Each participating artist submitted performance directions (in the form of text, video, image, etc.) for an international colleague to perform. Subsequently, the participants selected a set of performance directions to interpret and perform. Various projects were featured in Minneapolis during the Republican National Convention as part of The Unconvention (www.theunconvention.com) and projects were also be showcased during live events in Los Angeles from October through November 4th.
On November 4th, Exchange Rate: 2008, in partnership with Trade&Row’s Campaign Trial: The Election in Action series, produced a grand evening full of performative punditry, raucous referendums and live coverage of election night activities world-wide. The contemporary use of performance directions recalls Fluxus scores, Happenings and mail art of the 1950’s-70’s, but contains present day reverberations of mass communication and social networking through emails, text-messaging, blogs, video streaming, etc. As the world watched US citizens elect a new leader through the mass media, a local and international audience watched artists exchange and perform in response to the election campaigns. This series of performances engaged and affected this seemingly impenetrable stage of the international political arena.
“Exchange Rate: 2008 was meant to provide a platform for a different set of concerns about this election. It was structured to generate conversation and collaboration among artists around the globe. My hope was that it would provide an opportunity for a deepening and widening of the conversation about the election than the one playing out in the mainstream media coverage.” -Elana Mann
Exchange Rate: 2008 was made possible in part from generous funding from Trade & Row, Company Wide Shut, Chesed v’Tov Foundation, Side Street Projects, and GYST Ink.