Something Stupid – Monumentapolis Guide, Romantso, Athens, 2016-2017
In this work baboussis employs different media—objects/ephemeral constructions in a precarious balance, texts, photos and video—and urges us to see the real world in another way full of humour, the assemblage of the various monuments and memories, the name and the lawless, the titles and the wolves, the parody and the transient, the despair, the reality, the utopia as impasses and hope.
He proposes an installation structured into series whose core theme is the non-oblivion of institutions. He promotes as monuments the things that are never said. He suggests that we incorporate into contemporary life and historical conscience what all of us know but is never mentioned Baboussis returns the names, and dedicates monuments that correspond to the actual functioning of institutions and human relations.
As the curator Apostolis Artinos notes:
“The exhibition of Manolis Baboussis is a critical reflection upon the environment of the crisis and is structured around two beleaguered fields. On the one hand, the autistic stagnation of authority and its institutions—administrative, academic, artistic—as shown in a series of drawings of museums and academic facilities in his imaginary city; on the other, an over-accumulation of objects-signs which, despite their pluralism, cannot hide their dead-end multiplicity and multiplication capacity in their cosmic sphere. An artistic gesture that shifts things into the version of a materiality which Giorgio Agamben calls a “parodic object”. A distortive function that presents the object at its noblest but also at its humblest form. A divisive function that also takes over the linguistic core of Baboussis’ work—photographic, visual, poetic—to expose language as a weakness, as a field for applying the inapplicable, the unspoken, what constantly changes course and remains elusive at all its moments of exposure. What escapes from the object is also what preserves it, what imprints it onto the sphere of the intelligible. It is upon this fundamental reversal of the form, its dramatised side, that Baboussis elaborates his critical discourse—to be precise, his dis-enchantment with the state of things.”