American artist Adam Pendleton’s exhibition titled shot him in the face occupies the entire floor of KW with one large-scale gesture—a wall that diagonally cuts across the exhibition space. The shape of the wall resembles that of a billboard. The first sentence from the poem Albany by poet Ron Silliman functions as the exhibition’s point of departure. Pendleton appropriates the opening words of the text—“If the function of writing is to ‘express the world’”—and transforms it into a monumental work spanning the entirety of the constructed wall. Layers upon layers of Pendleton’s works are also “pasted” onto the wall.
These various arrangements, including posters, framed collages, and sculptural objects based on Pendleton’s extensive archival material, incorporate images from various sources such as art history, African independence movements, display systems, poetry, and French cinema—all kept within a consistently black-and-white aesthetic. As a counterpoint to Pendleton’s work, the exhibition includes one of Ian Wilson’s monochromatic paintings, which were created with the conceptual aim of producing distilled, non-referential objects without metaphoric content.