The Complete Owner’s Manual

Texts/rack-cards | Collaborative Exhibition
with Annika Grill and Yvette Poorter.

January 11 – February 15, 2003

DARE DARE Centre de diffusion d’art multidisciplinaire de Montréal

The Complete Owner’s Manual est un projet de collaboration basé sur le concept du manuel d’utilisation. L’intervention en galerie consiste d’une variété d’objets tridimensionnels parsemés dans l’espace, d’images et de textes affichés aux murs. Les objets et les images, des «artefacts culturels», sont réalisés par Grill et Poorter, artistes multidisciplinaires; les textes sont préparés par Blomgren, écrivain. Les textes n’expliquent pas les objets, mais offrent plutôt une perspective sur ce qui les précède en coulisse. The Complete Owner’s Manual est une installation qui fait un lien entre le processus de création et le produit par un dialogue visuel et littéraire à la fois instructif et ludique.

Textual and design components featuring a blueprint poster and a variable edition of 12 take-away rack-cards. Set within the context of the Owner’s Manual, these site-specific/object-specific cards work in supplement with displayed artifacts–sculptural works and images by Grill and Poorter.

Texts reprinted in Matrix #66 (2004), and collected in Corner Pieces, with exhibition images.



Some can see the apparatus, others cannot. The apparatus is dismissed by those who cannot see it. They suggest a colossal hoax, mass hysteria, brainwashing and cults. Those who see the apparatus claim to understand it. They share a quiet reverence for the apparatus, and believe it should be respected by all. The apparatus, they say, is the threshold, the mirror, the second body, and all that is needed is trust in the apparatus. Those who cannot see the apparatus are suspicious of those who can. They assert the idea of the apparatus is something distasteful, even dangerous. Those who can see the apparatus spend hours observing it. They occupy themselves by sketching the apparatus, building models of it, diagramming its inner workings; they amuse themselves by comparing drawings of the apparatus with others of similar mind, and find gratification in sharing their experiences. Those who cannot see the apparatus do not understand the behaviour of those who can. They cannot follow their conversations and are unable to decipher the drawings. They claim to see no resemblance between the various likenesses. Those who cannot see the apparatus are brought together in their common mistrust. They derive a strong sense of comfort from their shared disbelief.

Installation Image: Paul Litherland