Benjamin Forster

Benjamin Forster (b. 1985)

Benjamin Forster is . ( Primavera, MCA* 12 ) sure . ( NEW13, ACCA** 13 )

was perhaps. ( co-editing with rc***, un magazine, 14 )

o I am . ( , , Firstdraft, 13 ) ACT****, WA*****, NSW****** based .

( Bachelor of Visual Arts Honours, ANU*******, 08 ) or (Kynic, CCAS********, 13)

he will . ( Residencies: MCA* 13, SymbioticA********* 09, PICA********* 09,

CIA********** 12-13, FAC************ 11, Helsinki 14, etc************* ) no. I assure you.

you may ( My Brain Is in My Inkstand, Cranbrook Art Museum, 13 ) be

unsure. ( SafARI, around SYD**************, 14 ) of acronym . of

number .

* Museum of Contemporary Art Australia
** Australian Centre for Contemporary Art
*** Robert Cook
**** Australian Capital Territory
***** Western Australia
****** New South Wales, Australia
******* The Australian National University, Canberra
******** Canberra Contemporary Art Space
********* SymbioticA, The Centre of Excellence in Biological Arts at The University of Western Australia
********** Perth Institute of Contemporary Art
*********** The Centre for Interdisciplinary Arts Perth
************ Fremantle Arts Centre
************* Etcetera
************** Sydney

Through this residency I plan to research and maybe develop a new series of works concerning sense and nonsense within necessarily unknown languages; specifically focusing on Finnish and its surrounding linguistic influences. These set of languages are of particular interest to me as they do not share a common linguistic root to my native language, English. The politics of language, including cross-cultural communication and miscommunication, will be at the heart of this residency.

Through interaction with the community around Suomenlinna Studios and Helsinki more generally, I hope to collaboratively develop programmatic works (or active diagrams) that represent an understanding of how language functions. This project is the logical extension to my current practice, which has been concerned with the slippages of meaningful/meaningless and ideal/material within my own native language. This is a repositioning of my practice from an informed insider to the vulnerable stance of an outsider or ‘unenlightened’. From this fragile position, I want to develop methods and processes for engaging with the languages of Finland, with special focus on the political history surrounding the late 19th century Language Strife.

This of course is bound to shift as time and experience erodes the perfect future tense.