UTOPIA: Customs Declaration Form, Curated by Tim Kinsella

UTOPIA: Customs Declaration Form Sure Utopia is a symbol and I guess people assume it can’t actually be realized. And as a symbol it represents a space.

And as a space it must have parameters because that's what specifically defines a space - its boundaries - or else that space would just expand endlessly and become everywhere.
So what defines the borders of Utopia? What tension is at the boundaries of our imagined perfection? What stands at its fences looking in? And how’s it guarded? This is our fantasies I'm talking about - liberated from concerns of applicable practicality and necessity. In our ideals and dreams, do we build tall walls at the edges of Utopia Town?
Even the words we use on our most formal of forms are blurry: “customs" stands as a point of access or denial and "customs" define a culture. A "form" is filled out with a ballpoint pen to admit or omit your casual smugglings, and your spirit embodies your "form."
These photos, grouped with these thoughts in mind, in hopes that collectively they might subconsciously evoke these questions, represent the appropriate borders I could think to draw for one entering Michael's vision of Chicago Music.
--Tim Kinsella in conjunction with the exhibition "Michael Schmelling: Your Blues" Oct 16 — Dec 21, 2014

Museum of Contemporary Photography

at Columbia College Chicago
600 South Michigan Avenue
Chicago, IL 60605

(312) 663-5554


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