Daniel Malone

Daniel Malone


6 June - 5 July 2003

malone@artspace: a continuing sprawling, hyperactive look at the last decade of playing with cultural and social identities.

But who or what is Malone? This is a question that Daniel Malone's work has and will continue to always pre-empt critics, commentators and even his audience in asking – which is what makes the usually definitive retrospective format so ridiculous and so perfect at the same time, just the way Malone likes it.

Taking its cue from some of his most notorious pieces, like changing his name to Billy Apple because he thought the senior artist should be in a show instead of himself, or finding an artist with the same name as him in California when he couldn't make it for his own show there, this exhibition collects together works of every genre only to find Malone himself is missing in action.

Always playing with identity, cultural and social, and the expectations that come with it, this selection of works concentrates on the numerous ways his practice has pushed the role and definition of the artist and the artwork almost beyond recognition.

More like a collection of exquisite cocoons than butterflies, these videos, photographs, installations, performances and sculptures eschew the good looks of visual art for complex, even psychedelic, and often hilarious conceptual engagement in particular contexts. In this case the context is the exhibition itself, as well as Artspace, an institution he was accused of graffiti-ing when it first reopened on K-rd six years ago. And as usual he gets to have his cake and eat it too, setting up and inverting the myth-making nature of his biggest show yet, in its obscure and often fleeting existence, his work has been almost mythical itself.