Organisation for Cultural Exchange and Mishap (OCEM) comes out of an ongoing relationship between two artist-run spaces: West Space in Melbourne and Para Site Art Space in Hong Kong. Launched by(Hong Kong) and (Australia), the exhibition is held in Hong Kong and Melbourne respectively.
Based on the concept of a cultural exchange organisation, OCEM is not an organisation in the sense of having an administrative infrastructure or a delineated institutional voice, but rather is a fluid composite of practice as enacted by artwork, documents, and dialogue developed over an immeasurable length of time.
OCEM is interested in organisation, and not organisation as an institution. OCEM understands the primacy of artist-initiated activity. The members of the Organisation at any point in time will be the organisation. This project has no aims beyond allowing artists to develop their own aims and objectives for organisation. The organisation recognizes that these aims and objectives are developed via a process of organisation by member artists, and are therefore also subject to change and negation by member artists. The aims and objectives of the organisation are subservient to, and a direct result of imagining and enacting scenarios to do with organisation. It understands practice as a series of layered negotiations with social and cultural formations constituted through a radical critique of these constructs through play and subversion.
OCEM involves three Australian and four Hong Kong artists in a cross-cultural dialogue that attempts to exercise the scenario and enactment of Organization cultural exchange and mishap, reframe some of the issues surrounding trans/cultural practices, epitomised in the booming international exhibition circuit, international biennales, and artist residency programs. In this sense, it aims to consider why cultural exchange projects are regarded as important and how they affect and engage with participants in different cultural contexts.
More materials are available to view on site at Para Site.
The Archive Project is financially supported by the Project Grant of the Hong Kong Arts Development Council.