A Pledge. The First Part of a Trick – 02

Tim Kliukoit/Paul Paper

On the 31st May, 2013 at 5 pm at KCCC exhibition spaces (Didzioji Vandens str. 2, Klaipeda) the second exhibition/episode of a project “A Pledge. The First Part of a Trick” called “As If the Arrow Is Thinking” will be presented. The project will proceed till the end of the year 2013 and one after another will present cycle of exhibitions or episodes, if we consider it as a series.

Authors of the exhibition/episode “A Pledge. The First Part of a Trick – 02 – As If the Arrow Is Thinking” are young artists’ duet Tim Kliukoit (b. 1984, lives and studies in Vilnius) and Paul Paper (b. 1985, lives and studies in London). They are interested in a possible dynamics of relation between an artwork, an artist and a viewer. 

A Pledge. The First Part of a Trick

We might think of a trick as something fraudulent. But then, as with a modern conjuror, fraud too requires an exact mimesis of nature. Think of the airplane wing. Think of the blue feather ensuring that the arrow flies straight. So we need to be thinking of the trick as something scientific and real, bearing a scrupulous understanding and manipulation of things, including the human body in relation to such things. But the trick slides, it seduces, it cajoles (“Hey Duchess!”), it knows and enjoys the leap beyond the thingness of things.
Michael Taussig1

A plasterboard box, four and a half meters long, two and a half meters wide and of the same height, located in the grand floor of Klaipeda Art Centre, is actually a room in a room. The space isolated from the inner space of the building is as an island. A bit like a boat, I would say. Just like a boat, it is stimulating imagination.

Physically it is the remnant from the French-Lithuanian exhibition “Prestige: Phantasmagoria now”, that was held in the autumn of 2012. Art critic Nicolas Bourriaud in his text, published in catalogue of the exhibition2, adverts that the term ‘prestige’  came from the vocabulary of illusionists and is one of three component parts of a magic trick; its outcome, to be more precise. A prestige follows a pledge, when at a first glance ordinary objects are presented in a particular situation; and the trick itself that transforms conventional situation into an extraordinary moment.

I do not consider magic literally. I think about things, about stories things tell, how they tell them; about   relations of those objects, stories and storytelling techniques (with subjects), and dynamics between them.

I am thinking about situations that have the ability to create a pretext for rapture or difference to occur in a flow.

The box left from the latter exhibition (being part of the last stage of the trick) here, through the trick itself, turns into its germ – the pledge.  Now it is a trigger for another project, which is extended in time for a season, like TV series.

02 – As If the Arrow Is Thinking

It is as if the arrow is neither in the room, nor on the stage. I keep remembering a slide that Tim has found somewhere and even though there is no arrow in the slide either – I am thinking about circus and performances of conjurers (in duet!), where the arrow could be found at.

That is how the arrow is touching you with one of its vergesTherefore, once you enter a room, the room is also a stage. And once you are in the stage, it becomes less clear if you are here as a random follower, or as a performer, a conjurer, an artist; or as a tamer of it, of the arrow, who pulls in the string of the bow. Not necessarily the bow, perhaps. Perhaps the arrow could slice the air without the bow. Could it fly without you?

And since you are the tamer, the artist, the conjurer, the performer or just an arrow-following, room-entering stranger, insensibly you start thinking about the plurality of the roles. And if you drew a certain parallel here, it may become clear that there is also a target or a point in the plural (i.e. there are targets and points) that are being aimed at.


Maybe the arrow is self-dependent and even when you think you are aiming with it at a target (or, as has been clarified previously, at targets), the arrow might turn back and aim itself at you. At this moment all the essence of a game is poured out from its box and all figurines on a board are rearranged in a completely new order.

Thus you start thinking that the arrow necessarily exists. It is aiming at a target, at targets, at a network of targets, at a line, at a spiral, stretching itself into an infinite, and at you. As I was once told: if there is a weapon (the arrow!) on a stage, it will inevitably shoot at the end.

Authors of the exhibition: Tim Kliukoit and Paul Paper

Curator: Neringa Bumblienė

The exhibition will be held until 14th July, 2013

Organizers: KCCC, The Purple Swamphen

Sponsors: Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Lithuania, Klaipeda City Municipality, L’Institut français de Lituanie

[1] Michael Taussig, The Stories Things Tell And Why They Tell Them, e-flux journal#36, 07/ 2012, www.e-flux.com

[2] Prestige: Phantasmagoria Now, exhibition catalog, Klaipeda: KCCC, 2012,p. 24.