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Mobile Museum Retrospective, video installation, 2005-2006
Click here to view an extract from Mobile Museum Retrospective
Certainly the Millennium Court show suggests a self-contained, even self-consuming circularity. The wittiest and probably the best part of the project are the videos. It's as if O'Kane by-passes years of career-building by virtually inserting himself into the most hallowed preserves of contemporary art in a cheeky piece of wish-fulfilment. Even better is the non-stop pan across an endless succession of museums, including Tate Modern and the Guggenheim, all deposited in a nondescript landscape.
The image of cultural palaces presiding over wastelands is strong and contentious. We recognise the buildings O'Kane refers to because they are landmarks that have made an impact on public consciousness. There is debate over the validity and the success of such galleries, but they are rarely follies; they attract visitors, even if they are based on a business model in terms of promoting a corporate identity: Guggenheim Inc.
The unmistakable implication of O'Kane's video sequence featuring an impossible collection of galleries, all with their trademark individual architectural identities, jumbled together in one museum-opolis, is that the art world is a theme park. There is some validity to such a view. In this context his quotation signs, dispersed throughout the environment, are perhaps indicative of a desire to restore cultural debate to the wider social context.
'A self-contained show of art turned inside out' Aidan Dunne, The Irish Times, Dec. 2004
© Eamon O'Kane 2007