Nina Beier & Marie Lund

Sep 10, 2010 - Oct 3, 2010

London-based Danish artist Marie Lund and Berlin-based Nina Beier work individually but have maintained a collaborative practice since 2003. With staged events as well as videos, photographs and sculptures, Beier and Lund tinker with social hierarchies and group dynamics. Together they have created performances, objects, and ethereal interventions, often rooted in the history of materials, context, and social space. Exploring the conditions of conception, perception, and interpretation, Beier and Lund test the boundaries of communication while introducing subtle shifts within institutional and behavioral structures. In past projects, they commissioned a gallery and its staff to excavate and reopen each hole where art had, at any point, been hung on the walls—creating a comprehensive, if almost invisible, exhibition history and archive-by-memory. For another work, the artists asked gallery guards to barricade various passages of a museum, dispersing visitors and reimagining their path through the space.

Beier and Lund inaugurate a new season of the Front Room with their most recent performance-based collaboration: The Testimony (2009-2010). Documenting the oral histories of former commune habitants on film, the artists reconstruct these shared experiences as a single narrative told by one voice. Alongside the silent film, museum staff perform an ongoing reading of the resulting transcript, blurring the distinction between individual voices, and offering a poignant impression—between two generations—of failed political ideals and an abandoned utopia.


General support for the Contemporary’s exhibitions program is provided by Jeanne and Rex Sinquefield; William E. Weiss Foundation; and Nancy Reynolds and Dwyer Brown. General operating support is provided by Whitaker Foundation; Bank of America Charitable Foundation; Missouri Arts Council, a state agency; Regional Arts Commission; Arts and Education Council; and members of the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis.