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Curating Contemporary Art (MA)

Louis Chapple

Home: A Domestic Fiction.

Our project proposal, titled Home: A Domestic Fiction, aims to challenge the logocentric modes of curatorial communication and explore a non-hierarchical process of care in which artwork, artist and audience are situated as equal. Understanding the groups that we exist in to be both intentional and unintentional, we see ourselves as an “Unintentional Collective” as a model for rethinking social relations. 

Responding to a brief from Delfina Foundation as the Unintentional Collective, we have developed a card game designed to explore the complexities and multiplicities of the idea of ‘home’ within our globalised world. Giving agency to the personal histories of participants, a complex, intricate network of narratives can be built through gameplay, out of which a live archive of what may constitute a ‘home’ develops as new cards are added to the pack. We have commissioned artists David Blandy and April Lin to design the first two sets of five cards. Through this potentially ever-expanding card deck, the geographic rigidity that the notion of ‘home’ can evoke is challenged, and its ephemerality and temporality are highlighted. We seek to understand how a home is constructed through transient relationships and experiences. 

Our presentation displays the commissioned sets of cards, inviting the audience to explore and respond to the archive produced through playing the game. In an accompanying live event, an improvised sound performance by Hannan Jones and Shamica Ruddock, that uses the archive as score, delves deeper into non-logocentric modes of (re)collection.

DJing in Havana, Cuba.

Louis Chapple is a curator, writer and DJ based in London. His academic and curatorial research is concerned with sonic modes of contemporary artistic production, with a particular focus on the spatial mapping of sonic ecologies across the Black Atlantic, and the anti-exhibitionary modalities of carnival, sound systems and UK club culture.

Louis has curated exhibitions extensively across London, including at Saatchi Gallery and the yearly ACall festival, and has worked on international curatorial projects in Seoul (KR), Venice (IT) and Cape Town (SA). He has held positions at galleries including Alison Jacques and Niru Ratnam, and institutions such as the Peggy Guggenheim Collection. He co-hosts a monthly radio show on Netil Radio in collaboration with Sounds of Craft Records, and has organised multiple club nights, and music programming for art events.

In November 2022, Louis opened studio/chapple, an experimental project space in Deptford with a focus on discourse surrounding sonic cultures. The gallery is centred around critical and diverse programming, having worked with artists including Alia Hamaoui, Bill Daggs, Divine Southgate-Smith, Harold Offeh, Rene Matić and Shamiran Istifan, alongside live sonic events including a performance by Nadeem Din-Gabisi and club night collaboration with Habibti Nation.

Throughout his time on the Curating Contemporary Art programme, Louis has been developing an anti-exhibitionary curatorial methodology that, drawing on the agency and urgency of soundsystem culture, pirate radio and illegal rave - explores sound's emancipatory potentials through notions of 'liveness' and 'loudness'. In his Individual Research Project, Louis has expanded this methodology through a 'pavilion' of live sonic experimentation.

Rejecting the legacies of object-centric, individual-focused modes of exhibition making, the project asks the question - how can we curate an atmosphere - or vibe - through sounding space? how can we use sound to approach the curatorial collectively, and create an experiential mode of discourse that confronts the hierarchies and oppressive structures at play within the contemporary art world?