Title II at Galerie Antoine Ertaskiran / Montréal, Canada

Title II : Nina Canell, Simon Denny, DIS, Goldin+Senneby, Jason Matthew Lee, Aude Pariset, Catherine Telford-Keogh, Dena Yago

Curated by VIE D'ANGE (Daphné Boxer, Eli Kerr) & Christopher Kulendran Thomas

4 April - 5 May 2018

Galerie Antoine Ertaskiran
1892 Rue Payette
QC H3J 1P3 Canada


1. The 1996 Telecommunications Act was the first major overhaul of telecommunications law in the United States since the Federal Communications Commission was founded at the dawn of the Second World War in 1934. During the signing ceremony, Bill Clinton used the same pen Dwight D. Eisenhower had used to sign the Federal Highway Act of 1956, before proceeding to sign a digital copy of the bill across a touchscreen surface 1 – making the 1996 Telecommunications Act the first piece of legislation signed in cyberspace. 2

2. The 1990’s saw a new era defined by a techno-optimist spirit as well as the market confidence of the dot-com bubble. Meanwhile the opening up of previously inaccessible geopolitical markets enabled the global dominance of the neoliberal order. Speaking at the signing ceremony of the 1996 Telecommunication Act, Democratic from Senator Fritz Hollings (D) of South Carolina declared: “As of now the Berlin Wall of telecommunications has been demolished”. 3

3. Under Title II of the act, a diversity of communications streams such as broadcast television, landline and mobile telephony – and for the first time ever the Internet – were bundled under one piece of legislation. The 1996 act cited more competition and the empowerment of American entrepreneurs and families with the freedom of more choices at lower costs. It effectively deregulated the Internet and opened up public utilities to private enterprise. However until late 2017 under Title II, Internet Service Providers (ISPs) were prohibited from creating artificial scarcity by throttling content. Throttling would allow ISPs to capitalize upon the creation of fast and slow content traffic lanes. Opponents of such free-market deregulation feared the precedent where not all content would load equally as a logical first step to some content not being able to load at all. In anticipation of this year’s repeal of Title II, DIS produced Polimbo, a website-survey that acts as a political compass on the issue of net neutrality, presented in the exhibition on a phone that’s charging behind the gallery’s reception desk. Occasionally accessible in the gallery’s office, Goldin+Senneby’s After Microsoft… tells the story of how a California hillside came to collide with a global branding strategy.

4. Speed of access becomes the predominant aesthetic in the wake of a deregulated communication-scape. The work in this exhibition comes together as fragmentations of both language and form, presenting a series of truncated narratives which materialize in a half-loaded format of dis connectivity. Nina Canell’s subterranean fibre-optic cable sheathings are gathered from high grade cables employed in Korean communication networks. Not yet introduced in European and North American infrastructures, these cables are already being replaced in Korea.

5. Jason Matthew Lee’s work with modified payphones and payphone shells express the early hacking cultures of network exploration known as ‘phreaking’. 4 Lee’s works bare a connection to Canell’s emptied out cable skins which also engage with the real passageways of communication infrastructures to evoke a visceral vocality.

6. Just as Lee and Canell’s works are cut off and segmented from a larger network, the exhibition presents an incomplete selection of canvases from Simon Denny’s scalable body of work The Personal Effects of Kim Dotcom. Since 2013 Denny has chronicled an ongoing portrait of Internet entrepreneur turned activist Kim Dotcom through an iterative documentary style exhibition-making practice. 5 Kim Dotcom’s website Megaupload was one of the most visited file-sharing platforms until his assets, servers and websites were seized in a high profile FBI raid on his New Zealand compound. 6

7. The work of Dena Yago and Catherine Telford-Keogh equally deal with the entanglement and congestion of language when physicalized into tangible forms. Dena Yago’s CNC’d rubber text works speak to the perennial ways in which form obfuscates and redefines the reception of language. Her work Remove the Outside and the Inside Remains recalls the gestures of deregulation to ‘remove’ and ‘cut away to the essential’. Considering Yago’s work in relation to Nina Canell’s dislocated cable sheathings, the transmutability of materials make apparent how material can be the conduit for information while equally being the information itself. Catherine Telford-Keogh’s work slows the outside world by materializing into hardened pools and large panes of confinement. Telford-Keogh draws on an interest in phonetics and form to explore a sensory memory that internalizes the ways that language shapes material. 7

8. This exhibition is the second chapter of a two-part collaboration with VIE D’ANGE. Aude Pariset’s Promession® #1 remains from the previous exhibition at the gallery. This work comprises a colony of mealworms which have been eating away at styrofoam while hermetically encased in a bed frame. This ecosystem has both matured and deteriorated into an uneven state; where some worms have perished, others keep eating and some have transformed into beetles leaving skin sheddings in their wake.

1. Lamolinara, Guy (19 February 1996). “Wired for the Future: President Clinton Signs Telecom Act at LC”. Library of Congress. Retrieved 22nd March 2018.

2. In response to Clinton and Gore’s symbolic foray of establishing law in cyber space, the cyber-libertarian John Perry Barlow – an American poet, essayist and lyric writer for the Grateful Dead – wrote his influential manifesto A Declaration for Cyber Independence, proclaiming: “Governments of the Industrial World, you weary giants of flesh and steel, I come from Cyberspace, the new home of Mind. On behalf of the future, I ask you of the past to leave us alone. You are not welcome among us.
You have no sovereignty where we gather”.
Perry Barlow, John. (8 February 1996, Davos Switzerland.) “A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace”. Electronic Frontier Foundation. Retrieved 20th March 2018.

3. Signing of the 1996 Telecommunications Act. Al Gore (Introduction), Bill Clinton (Address), Sen Frtiz Hollings (D) Closing Address).” C-SPAN, Washington, D.C. 8 February. 1996.

4. As a predecessor to computer hacking, the subculture of Phreaking emerged alongside cybernetics and within the political turmoil of the late 1960’s. Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak cites Phreaking as a profound influence upon him as a young programmer. In her essay Phreaks, Hackers and Trolls: The Politics of Transgression and Spectacle, Gabriella Coleman describes how communications law evolved in response to Phreaking by citing Ursula Le Guin: “To Make a Thief, Make an Owner; to Create Crime, Create Laws”.

5. Denny has indexed the 110 items seized by the US Government and rematerialized them as inkjet printed canvases, often exhibiting the canvases with copies and replicas of the seized property. According to the artist, these seized possessions represent a sort of venn diagram of shared systems of value between Kim Dotcom and the US Authorities. The Grand Jury indictment is printed and displayed next to the canvases. It includes a full list of the seized property.

6. During the 1990’s, as a teenager, Kim Schmitz (better known as Kim Dotcom) used to hack the databases of AT&T and other major phone companies. Exploiting the vulnerabilities of an emerging global telecoms infrastructure, it is alleged that Schmitz made bulk purchases of stolen phone card information from American hackers. Schmitz then set up premium chat lines in Hong Kong and in the Caribbean and used a “war dialer” program to call the lines en masse with the stolen card numbers – generating over €50,000 in ill-gained profits.
Gallagher, Sean (26 January 2012). “The Fast, Fabulous, Allegedly Fraudulent Life of Megaupload’s Kim Dotcom”. Wired. Retrieved 24th March 2018.

7. Through an expansive inventory of mass produced consumables, such as trademarked food items and institutional cleaning products, Telford-Keogh’s work amasses a material economy of the everyday to conjure an uncanny encounter – where recollection of material memory overcomes a sanitization of the senses.



Nina Canell (Born Sweden,1979, lives and works in Berlin). Canell’s work, in general, deals with invisible energies made apparent. Inheriting core tenets from Fluxus, her work is situated somewhere between established, static sculpture and the performativity of natural events or occurrences. Her recent sculptures employ fragments or ‘cuttings’ from high voltage cables, which first emerged in her significant 2014 solo shows at Camden Arts Centre, London; Moderna Museet, Stockholm, and formed the core of her presentations at Art Basel, Hong Kong, and Witte de With, Rotterdam. In this exhibition Canell exhibits new cuttings from subterranean fiber optic cables used in Korea. Not yet implemented in Europe, these high grade cables are already being replaced in Asia. 
Nina Canell is one of six artists who collectively represented Norway, Sweden, and Finland for a joint project titled Mirrored in the Nordic Pavilion at the Venice Biennale 2017. Canell’s solo exhibitions include Museo Tamayo, Mexico City (2017), Le Crédac, Ivry-sur-Seine (2017), Unlimited, Art 47 Basel (2016), Arko Art Centre, Seoul (2015), Moderna Museet, Stockholm (2014), Camden Arts Centre, London (2014), Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, Newcastle (2014), Lunds Konsthall, Sweden (2014), Midway Contemporary Art, Minneapolis (2013), Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin, (2012), Kunsthalle Fridericianum, Kassel (2011), Museum fur Moderne Kunst, Vienna (2010). Her work has also featured in major international group exhibitions, including La vie Moderne, 13th Biennale de Lyon; 18th Biennale, Sydney; La Triennale, Intense Proximity, Palais de Tokyo, Paris; On Line, Museum of Modern Art, New York; Liverpool Biennale, Tate Liverpool; Manifesta 7, Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol; 7th Gwangju Biennale, Gwangju. Canell’s work is held in major private and public collections worldwide and featured in numerous monographs and publications.

Simon Denny was born in Auckland, New Zealand in 1982.
He graduated with a BFA from the University of Auckland’s Elam School of Fine Arts in 2004, and completed his Meisterschuler at Städelschule, Staatliche Hochschule für Bildende Künste, Frankfurt am Main (2009). Recent exhibitions include The Founder’s Paradox, Michael Lett, Auckland (2017), Real Mass Entrepeneurship, OCAT, Shenzen (2017), Blockchain Future States, Petzel Gallery, New York (2016), Products for Organising, Serpentine Sackler Gallery, London (2015), The Innovator’s Dilemma, MOMA PS1, New York (2015) and The Personal Effects of Kim Dotcom, Adam Art Gallery, Wellington (2014). Denny was selected to represent New Zealand at the 56th Venice Biennale, exhibiting Secret Power at the New Zealand Pavilion. Simon Denny currently lives and works in Berlin, Germany.

DIS is a New York–based collective formed of Lauren Boyle, Solomon Chase, Marco Roso, and David Toro. DIS works across a wide range of media, most recently transitioning platforms from an online magazine to a video-streaming edutainment channel. The group has become the central nucleus of an ever-growing international community of artists, musicians, photographers, writers, and designers; functioning as artists and curators, DIS weaves together the content of collaborators with their own to propose discourse around chosen topics. DIS curated the 9th Berlin Biennale in 2016. In this exhibition DIS has contributed Polimbo, a mobile app-questionnaire which allows users to locate themselves on a political spectrum of net neutrality. This summer DIS will be in Winnipeg as guest instructors of the 2018 Summer Institute at Plug In Institute for Contemporary Art.

Goldin+Senneby (since 2004) is a framework for collaboration set up by artists Simon Goldin and Jakob Senneby; exploring juridical, financial and spatial constructs through notions of the performative and the virtual. Their collaboration started with The Port (2004-06); acting in an emerging public sphere constructed through digital code. In their more recent body of work, known as Headless (2007 -), they approach the sphere of offshore finance, and its production of virtual space through legal code. Looking at strategies of withdrawal and secrecy, they trace an offshore company on the Bahamas called Headless Ltd. A ghostwritten detective novel continuously narrates their investigations. Since 2010 their work has focused on The Nordenskiold Model, an experiment in theatrical finance, in which they attempt to (re)enact the anarchoalchemical scheme of 18th century alchemist August Nordenskiold on the financial markets of today.

Solo exhibitions include: ‘Standard Length of a Miracle’, Tensta konsthall, Stockholm (2016); ‘M&A’, Artspace NZ, Auckland (2013); ‘I dispense, divide, assign, keep, hold’ NAK, Aachen (2012); ‘The Decapitation of Money’, Kadist, Paris (2010); ‘Headless. From the public record’, Index, Stockholm (2009); ‘Goldin+Senneby: Headless’, The Power Plant, Toronto (2008). Group exhibitions include: ‘The Eighth Climate’, 11th Gwangju Biennial (2016); ‘Art Turning Left’, Tate Liverpool (2013); ‘Mom, am I barbarian?’, 13th Istanbul Biennial (2013); ‘The Deep of the Modern’, Manifesta 9, Genk (2012); ‘The End of Money’, Witte de With, Rotterdam (2011); ‘The Moderna Exhibition’, Moderna Museet, Stockholm (2010); ‘In living contact’, 28:th Bienal de Sao Paulo (2008). Residencies include: Headlands, San Francisco (2012); SALT, Istanbul (2012); Kadist, Paris (2010); Gasworks, London (2008); IASPIS, Stockholm (2007).

Jason Matthew Lee (b. 1989 in Chicago, USA) lives and works in New York.

Aude Pariset (b. 1983 in Versailles, France) lives and works in Berlin. Solo exhibitions include Greenhouses at Cell Project Space, London (2016), Crawler at Ginerva Gambino, Cologne (2015) and A bōAt[] A Promise, Kunstverein Nürnberg, Germany (2014). Selected group exhibitions in 2015 include Co-Workers at the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris (2015), Find Your Beach, curated by Christina Lehnert at the Gebert Stiftung für Kultur, Rapperswil (2015) and Inside China, curated by Jo-ey Tang, Palais de Tokyo and K11 Foundation, Hong Kong and Shanghai (2015).

Catherine Telford Keogh is an artist based in Toronto.

She studied Sculpture at the Yale School of Art (2011) and Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies at Yale University(2013). She has participated in group exhibitions at Seattle Art Museum, WA; Bronx Museum, NYC; The Alice, WA; Vox Populi, PA; Baby’s All Right, Brooklyn, NYC; Greenpoint Film Festival, Brooklyn, NYC and recently mounted solo exhibitions at Roberta Palen, Toronto and Evans Contemporary, Peterborough, Ont. She was awarded the Fanie B. Pardee Prize, Yale School of Art, 2011, the Susan S. Clark award, Yale University, 2013 and was a finalist for the Toby Devan Lewis Fellowship, Yale School of Art, 2011.
Dena Yago is an artist who was born in 1988. She has had numerous gallery and museum exhibitions, including at the Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw and at Bodega in New York.

Galerie Antoine Ertaskiran was established in 2012 and is located in a restored welding workshop in the Griffintown neighborhood in Montréal. In the course of its early development the gallery has already gained an excellent reputation and become recognized as one of the most important galleries in Canada. The gallery also aims to engage wider audiences with current practices in contemporary arts, and through this to connect them with contemporary social issues. The gallery’s program focuses on emerging and mid-career contemporary artists from Montréal, Canada and abroad.
Christopher Kulendran Thomas’ work has been included in the 7th Bi-City Biennale in Shenzhen (2017), the 11th Gwangju Biennale (2016), the 9th Berlin Biennale (2016), the 3rd Dhaka Art Summit (2016) and presented in exhibitions including “I was raised on the Internet”, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (2018), “New Eelam: Tensta”, Tensta konsthall, Stockholm (2017), “Christopher Kulendran Thomas”, New Galerie, Paris (2017), “Bread and Roses”, Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw (2016), “moving is in every direction”, Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum für Gegenwart, Berlin (2017), “Co- Workers: Network As Artist”, Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris (2015) and “Art Turning Left: How Values Changed Making”, Tate Liverpool (2013). He is represented by New Galerie in Paris and Galerie Antoine Ertaskiran in Montréal. 
VIE D’ANGE is a collaboration between Daphné Boxer and Eli Kerr founded in 2016. Together they produce exhibitions from a 300 m² former auto-body garage divided into two gallery spaces in Montréal, Canada. With a focus on material legacies of technological shifts and their subsequent reorganization of social systems, Boxer and Kerr approach their exhibition program as a continuous yet non-linear script of episodic narratives.