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Oct 17, 2011

This week: Duncan, Brian, and Abigail Satinsky in conversation with Christine Hill at the Open Engagement conference, which took place from May 13 to 15, 2011 at Portland State University.

Open Engagement is an initiative of PSU’s Art and Social Practice MFA program that encourages discussion on various perspectives in social practice.

Christine Hill is an artist, musician, hobby librarian and the proprietor of Volksboutique, a former second-hand shop turned production facility operating out of Brooklyn, New York and Berlin, Germany.

Hill's work proposes new investigations into mixed-media installation and performance. Examining contemporary forms of popular entertainment (for example, producing a television talk show in a New York gallery, in Pilot, 2000), imitating paradigms of elite advertising, and deploying businesses as art projects (a second-hand clothing store in Berlin, Volksboutique in 1996-97, a fully operable tour guide agency in New York in 1999) Hill investigates the proximity of contemporary art to mass entertainment, consumerism, and popular culture. In the process, she proposes new roles for viewers (as consumers, tourists, members of a TV audience), redefines artistic spaces of exhibition (as stores, studios, catwalks), and reinvents a mobile artistic identity (whether as talk show host, store owner, or tour guide). She defines these interventions as 'Organizational Ventures.'

Hill has exhibited and lectured widely internationally. She has been the subject of numerous publications and she shows regularly. Recent solo exhibitions include Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York; Galerie EIGEN+ART, Berlin; the Museum of Contemporary Art Leipzig; the MigrosMuseum in Zurich and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Cleveland. Forthcoming projects include collaboration with the curator Mary Jane Jacob for Chicago's Sullivan Galleries and a solo presentation at the Martin Gropius Bau in Berlin, both in 2009.

She was included in documenta X in 1997, and has participated in numerous international group exhibitions. Her work has been reviewed extensively, including in Artforum, The New York Times, The Village Voice, Art in America and in considerable international publications. The "Volksboutique Style Manual" is in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art, New York. The Volksboutique project "Minutes" was included in the 2007 Venice Biennale under the curation of Robert Storr.
Christine Hill is Professor and Chair of Media, Trend and Public Appearance at the Bauhaus University in Weimar, Germany.