Radical Loyalty centres on the construction of a sculpture park on a small plot of land in the industrial town of JÃ¤rvakandi, Estonia. The sculptures themselves have been proposed by an alliance of managing directors from international companies (brought together by Chris Evans from the corporate sectors of retail, telecommunications, energy, advertising and finance). Acting as consultant, Evans has asked each member to respond to their individual feelings about loyalty, defining how their perspectives could be seen as radical. These ideas have been visualised in a series of prints and will assist a collective of Estonian artists, responsible for building the countryâ€™s monuments during the era of Soviet occupation and enlisted by Evans to build the allianceâ€™s park.
“Unaccompanied by any information giving direct insight into the negotiation process, his etchings, his painted impression of the finished site, and his small maquette have more in common with the ramshackle modernity of the Festival of Britain or Arte Povera than with ideogrammatic 21st-century corpo-cultural identities. Seen in the hermetically sealed environment of Tramway, they gain a mysterious lightness of being and a relative autonomy from the leash of their public context. The beauty of his designs asserts itself over the moribund entrepreneurial clichÃ©s that they illustrate. Evans surreptitiously finds a crack in the corporate landscape for his agency to declare itself â€“ something that marks him out from the plethora of networking artists currently seeking to integrate their work with â€˜life”.
[Excerpt from â€˜Chris Evans at Tramwayâ€™, Neil Mulholland Flash Art No.233, Novemberâ€”December 2003]
Chris Evans has previously exhibited at Store Gallery (2005), Galerie Juliette Jongma, Amsterdam (2005), Artconnection, Lille (2004), Dundee Contemporary Arts (2003), Tramway Project Space, Glasgow (2003), Nordic Institute for Centemporary Art (2002), The Henry Moore Institute, Leeds (2003). Chris Evans will be presenting a project at Casco, Utrecht, for which he has invited the Amsterdam Police force to give a recruitment talk at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy.
UPDATE – OCTOBER 2006
All the maquettes and prints from the project will be exhibited together for the first time at Studio Voltaire, London from 6 October – 12 November 2006. Some of this work was also exhibited recently as part of the British Art Show 6, which toured the UK (2005-6).