No Experience Necessary
No Experience Necessary (Win a Gallery Show in London)’ is a project by the Slovenian artist Jasmina Cibic (www.jasminacibic.org). Cibic uses the Bus-Tops screens to advertise the opportunity for the broadest public to enter a lottery that could literally see them win a solo exhibition in a London gallery space. No mere cynical rhetoric: by gathering a minimum number of required passwords, going to a specifically created website (www.noexperiencenecessary.org) and completing an entry form, anyone is able to enter the draw that will result in the winner being offered a solo exhibition in a brand new project space in London. No experience necessary, no questions asked – apart from the required minimum 5 (of 31) passwords- anyone defining himself or herself as an artist who is lucky enough to have his or her name drawn out of the lottery ball will be offered a solo exhibition opening in January 2013. The lucky winner will be announced at a public ceremony planned to take place in London in July 2012.
In ‘No Experience Necessary (Win a Gallery Show in London)’, certain discourses are immediately, even humorously, evident. For example, there’s a tongue-in-cheek comment on the nature of the international art system and London’s fevered complicity in sustaining an art system that focuses heavily on the commercial and the visibility of the individual, in part by creating a structure that strips away the correlation of artistic quality and individual identity that are often a feature of this phenomenon. But other aspects prove it an altogether more complex and ambivalent work: in requiring that the would-be entrants gather a certain number of passwords to qualify, there is an implied narrative that we might interpret as seeing the international art system as being something that requires a lot of legwork to get ahead. Or, for those who are smart enough to crack the code with minimal information, there may be means by which some canny individuals can circumvent time-consuming effort. As a lottery, however, luck and statistical likelihood always plays a role.