Agency of Unrealized Projects

kopfbau_105-1024x682View of proposition for a Museum of Unrealized Projects made by Alejandro Aravena

“Agency Of Unrealized Projects“ (AUP) is a project by e-flux and the Serpentine Gallery London devised by Hans Ulrich Obrist, Julieta Aranda, Anton Vidokle and Julia Peyton-Jones. The Berlin edition of AUP is conceived in collaboration with Berliner Künstlerprogramm/DAAD.

It is a public database of censored, forgotten, postponed, impossible or rejected art projects, by nearly 2000 artists. View online and submit your unrealized projects.

Unlike unrealized architectural projects, which are frequently exhibited and circulated, unrealized artworks tend to remain unnoticed or little known. But perhaps there is another form of artistic agency in the partial expression, the incomplete idea, the projection of a mere intention? AUP seeks to document and display these works. Whether censored, forgotten, postponed, impossible, or rejected, unrealized projects form a unique testament to the speculative power of non-action.

AUP follows the publication entitled “Unbuilt Roads: 107 Unrealized Projects,” collated by Hans Ulrich Obrist and Guy Tortosa after several years of international research conducted in the late 1990s. Twenty years later, the Agency of Unrealized Projects was formed in collaboration with Julieta Aranda and Anton Vidokle, and an open call for unrealized projects was issued for its first public exhibition at ArtBasel in 2011. The open call will continue until all unrealized art projects are compiled.

e-flux was invited to develop a special project for the Kopfbau during Art Basel 42, in 2011. The Kopfbau (head building) was the oldest building in the Messeplatz complex, slated for demolition later in the year. In response to this invitation, e-flux developed a constellation of projects situated somewhere between exhibitions of art and the concrete forms of sociality encountered in everyday life. Conceived as an independent universe with its own bar, hotel, shops, admissions, and so forth, this project functioned in parallel, and as the inverse to the neighboring art fair: operating during alternative hours and in surprising and often paradoxical ways, and ranging in scope from the educational to playfully predatory and mercantile. Its component parts drew on a wide circle of institutions, artists, curators, and writers who have been involved with various e-flux projects over the past several years and comprised seven discrete projects, including Agency of Unrealized Projects (AUP).

Art42Basel11_MEG_08_325-1024x682View of Agency of Unrealized Projects, Kopfbau, Basel, 2011. Courtesy of e-flux, New York.

A new open call for unrealized projects was launched on the occasion of a Berlin edition of AUP in collaboration with the Berliner Künstlerprogramm/ DAAD. Additionally, numerous Berlin artists, as well as former and current guests of the Berliner Künstlerporgramm/ DAAD were invited to participate. The AUP will take up temporary residence at the daadgalerie in Berlin from September 9th to October 20th 2012 to present newly submitted projects as well as the existing inventory of the AUP archive. The public was also invited to explore and to browse through the growing archive of unrealized artistic ideas.

Submit your project.

Thomas Büsch

Filmmaker, Founding Member and Secretary General of diyalog, promotion of cultural exchange with Turkey. Since 2012 he is also project manager of InEnArt.

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