In order to remain autonomous, at some point art began to copy everything that is not autonomous. There was no lack of supply and demand since power, as we know, can only be held over the production of truth or else it does not function.–Peter Friedl
Since the early 1980s, Friedl has written on a variety of subjects. The book Secret Modernity: Selected Writings and Interviews 1981–2009 compiles for the first time a representative selection of his (partly unpublished) texts, along with a series of interviews. As in his artworks, Friedl's writings quote from and rework multiple genres. He offers reviews and portraits of George Sand and Clarice Lispector, of Alighiero Boetti and Jean-Luc Godard; articles and documents contributing to theater and film history, which examine the work of, among others, Richard Foreman, Robert Wilson, or Glauber Rocha; as well as comments and reflections on his own projects. Alongside these are essays delving deep into the past, exploring mainly colonial history and its paradoxical traces in the present: narratives about Haiti, South Africa, and Italy's repressed colonial rule in Africa.
Peter Friedl (b. 1960) lives in Berlin. He has participated in documenta X and 12 (1997, 2007); the 48th Venice Biennale (1999); the 3rd Berlin Biennial for Contemporary Art (2004); the 2nd International Biennial of Contemporary Art, Seville (2006); Manifesta 7, Trento (2008); the 7th Gwangju Biennale (2008); the 28th Bienal de São Paulo (2008), and the Tirana International Contemporary Art Biennial (2009). His solo exhibitions include “Blow Job” at Extra City Kunsthal Antwerpen (2008); “Working” at Kunsthalle Basel (2008); the retrospective survey “Work 1964–2006” at Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona, Miami Art Central, and Musée d'Art Contemporain, Marseille (2006–07); and “Out of the Shadows” at Witte de With, Center for Contemporary Art, Rotterdam (2004). Since the 1980s, he has published numerous essays and books, including Four or Five Roses (Lukas & Sternberg, 2004) and Working at Copan (Sternberg Press, 2007).
Co-published with Extra City Kunsthal Antwerpen