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February 2015 Video Space

The Methadone Metronome

Curated by renaro

1 - 28 February 2015



Guy Ben-Ner / Oliver Laric / The Otolith Group / Frances Scott / Mariana Silva and Pedro Neves Marques (Inhabitants) 


Television has been constantly derided as 'the drug of the nation', but with the advent of watching as a commodified social-experience, do we now ironically need a form of TV as a positive drug? And could television be a space to hide from the 24/7 onslaught of productivity, perhaps even a site to learn strategies of resistance?

This programme considers the artistic usage of some narrative forms traditionally associated with the televisual: the documentary, the sitcom, the music video, the advertisement, and the act of televisual broadcast itself. The presented works form complex critiques within these established structures, and imbue knowledge, rather than extract data, using these structures to infect the viewer with knowledge about the systems of financial and cognitive capitalism.

Originally, television was a passive activity, with only the advertisements as a distraction mechanism. But as time went on, it became clear that there was no labour to be extracted from such a passive viewer, so engagement was co-opted to constantly provide metrics and data about the individual viewer. This has turned us active by the constant pressure to interact via various social-media platforms via live tweeting, and the social need to comment. These analytical data sets turn the programming into the site of commodification, so our desires, habits and subjectivity can be extracted. 

So let's consider for a moment an altered version of television: one in which the daily onslaught of reality programmes, with documentaries about poverty porn, or sitcoms laced with teenage sex innuendos are transposed. What would happen if rather than insipid clips shows about people hurting themselves, we were given a discursive presentation of the role private property, debt, or a contemplative encounter with what happens when public broadcasting is shut down because of financial meltdown. And rather than documentaries about being obese, we learn about slaves being objectified and thrown into the sea as an insurance write-off, or how speculative fiction could be used as a financial gamble.

These structures facilitate the potential to consider a social that is not reduced to micro-exchange through a monetised network of analytic mining, but a space to briefly pause the metronome.

renaro would like to thank all the artists involved within this programme who have given permission for the work to be shown without remuneration.





  • Guy Ben-Ner
  • Stealing Beauty (2007)

    Courtesy of the artist, Konrad Fischer Galerie, Gimpel Fils, and Postmasters.


  • Frances Scott
  • THE MIRACLE METHODS SERIES: Distance Readers (2012)


  • Oliver Laric
  • Touch My Body (renaro black-friday edit) (2008)


  • Mariana Silva and Pedro Neves Marques (Inhabitants)
  • Beams of Cathodic Rays Shooting (2013)


  • The Otolith Group
  • Hydra Decapita (2010)


    Running Time: 59 minutes (approx)


    Full technical details accompany the programme in the Video Space.



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