the exhibition


Monument to Now is a lavishly illustrated publication featuring the Dakis Joannou collection. The four hundred fifty pages book accompanies the major contemporary art exhibition Monument to Now, organized by the DESTE Foundation for Contemporary Art to run as an official part of “ATHENS 2004, Culture” for the summer Olympics in Athens 2004. All artworks from the collection are displayed on layouts interspersed by matt spreads containing illustrated essays by Dan Cameron, Jeffrey Deitch, Alison M. Gingeras, Massimiliano Gioni and Nancy Spector.

The all plastic cover design features a three dimensional shape lighting up when touched by a viewer and displaying an ethereal colour sequence. As a viewer opens the publication the minimalist shape is transformed into a utilitarian book support.

Art Director: Stefan Sagmeister
Design: Matthias Ernstberger
Photo: Various
Essays: Dan Cameron, Jeffrey Deitch, Alison M. Gingeras, Massimiliano Gioni and Nancy Spector
Number of pages: 450
Publisher: DESTE Foundation for Contemporary Art

Monument to Now is available in major, selected bookstores worldwide.

For more information contact:

Deste Foundation
Centre For Contemporary Art
Filellinon 11 & Em.Pappa street
N.Ionia 142 34, Athens Greece
tel:+30 210 27 58 490
fax:+30 210 27 54 862

Dan Cameron
This Statement Is False
“Art, unlike language, can be simultaneously true and false, and might be said to thrive on this atmosphere of sustained illogic. To press the point one step further, we might say that art’s seemingly limitless capacity to refer to and link up with realms of knowledge that otherwise fall beyond the grasp of our rational frame of reference are what make its place in our lives, over time, less a matter of choice and more a case of absolute necessity.”

Alison Gingeras
The Birth of Crass: The Artist’s Persona in the Age of Advanced Capitalism
“Society has often struggled with how to compartmentalize artists and their personas. As an inverted barometer for societal values, artists can safely act out fantasies, break the taboos, and enjoy the indulgences that are shunned by the moral consensus. Accordingly, since the dawn of human civilization, artists have always been granted a different status than the rest of the populace. Artists could speak to the gods. They were granted privileged positions, disregarding traditional class divisions. The figure of the artist possessed a unique duality, eliciting equal doses of fascination and contempt, envy and disdain.”

Massimiliano Gioni
Your Now Is My Surroundings
“Split between iconoclasm and iconophilia, contemporary artists seem trapped in a paradoxical exercise: in the very moment when they proclaim themselves divinities, they are already offering an antidote against their own authority. This systematic practice of doubt might be the most tragic revelation of today’s art, but it is also its ultimate strength: trust no one, not even yourself.”

Jeffrey Deitch
The Culture of Collage
“As abstraction paralleled developments in science and social organization for much of the twentieth century, collage is now much closer to contemporary models of social and scientific thinking. People may live and work within large abstract structures such as corporate and government bureaucracies, but their daily experience is increasingly collaged. The multiple windows on computer screens create a virtual collage of a person’s professional, personal, and financial interests. Internet links, satellite television, and mobile telephones provide a web of connections and juxtapositions that fit within Max Ernst’s definition of collage as “a meeting of two distant realities on a plane foreign to them both.”

Nancy Spector
Fifteen Minutes Is No Longer Enough
“In today’s world, the perpetual onslaught of information—no matter how sanitized or diffused it may be—reflects the repetition compulsion inherent to post-traumatic stress disorder. Footage from national disasters like the Challenger and Columbia explosions or the devastation of the terrorist attacks on 9/11 was replayed again and again over the course of months, as if the incessant visual recurrence of the events would somehow provide clues to their meaning. The media’s endless obsession over intrigue, crime, and tragedy, like the O.J. Simpson trial or the JonBenet Ramsey murder, works less to provide closure than to deflect our real inability to articulate a narrative that effectively portrays the cataclysmic impact of trauma.”


© 2004 monument-to-now