Goldin+Senneby: Headless. From the Public Record

4 November–13 December 2009

The artist duo Goldin+Senneby works collaboratively since 2004; staging actions and discussions as a mode of investigating juridical, financial and spatial constructs. In the project Headless, which began in 2007 with the investigation of the offshore company Headless Ltd located in the Bahamas, the artists make use of varying theatrical gestures to expose strategies of withdrawal used by the financial offshore industry.

Headless, a work in progress, often referred to as an ongoing performance, plays with fictionalization, performativity and appropriation. The project creates a complex structure in which the multiple voices of actors and agents stand forth while the artists choose a position of absence. The book Looking for Headless articulates the project during its execution. Goldin+Senneby has commissioned writer John Barlow, using the pseudonym K.D., to function as a ghostwriter of a murder mystery that surveys the project’s process of creation where both real and fictional characters are allowed to appear in the story and in reality. As part of the exhibition at Index, five new chapters of Looking for Headless are released and added to the already existing chapters.

When Index exhibits the latest development in this slowly evolving project, Headless is given its first physical manifestation in Sweden. The opening night features an artist talk in a set design by Anna Heymowska. Angus Cameron, speaking in the artists’ place, discusses the legal, philosophical and spatial ideas of offshore with curator Kim Einarsson. Cameron, a human geographer and academic state theorist, is asked to reflect on the speculative relationship between offshore company Headless Ltd and Georges Bataille’s secret society Acéphale as proposed by the project. The talk is recorded opening night and re-played during the rest of the exhibition.