De Appel, Amsterdam, 2014
For the exhibition Father, Can't You See I'm Burning?, Michael Portnoy “installed” another artist, Rán Flygenring, within the exhibition space for the purpose of relentlessly ‘roasting’ and ‘improving’ all the other works in the show. With periodic discussions and prompts from Portnoy, The Roaster worked away like a crackpot engineer or closet comedian, skewering and transmuting the forms and ideas within the exhibition. A long-form speculative exercise, The Roaster generated hundreds of new art works and new breeds of art that were illustrated throughout her 8 week residency.
The Roaster also joined the ranks of The Improvement League. Assembled and directed by Portnoy for The Taipei Biennial 2010, The Improvement League is a think tank of shifting members established to “improve” existing breeds of art making by pruning, grafting and hybridizing certain lines of thought, in a kind of conceptual horticulture. More futurology than critique, the League uses the seeds within contemporary forms and approaches as tools for invention.
The Roaster's residency in Amsterdam was kindly supported by the Lloyd Hotel & Cultural Embassy.
All drawings by Rán Flygenring.