Performance as Publishing

— Fiona Banner

2009 –, Book 1/1

Fiona Banner’s work explores the problems and possibilities of written language. In 2009, Banner officially registered as a publication – ‘Fiona Banner’ – in effect, publishing herself.  2009 – is a photograph of the artist’s back, bearing an ISBN (International Standard Book Number) number and barcode. Book 1/1, is one of an edition of books, each the same yet unique, as each has its own ISBN number and is registered under its own individual title.

Fiona Banner, Book 1/1, 2011 Fiona Banner, 2009–, 2011

1066; Neon Full Stop

Fiona Banner’s work repeatedly explores the themes of narrative and history. In 1066 Fiona Banner describes in words the Battle of Hastings, Britain’s last invasion. Her primary source is ‘The Bayeux Tapestry’, the key historical document of the battle, which influences the way history depicts the invasion to this day. Here, Banner writes as if she is describing a movie – her plain language revealing the absurdly violent, often pornographic imagery of the tapestry.

Neon Full Stop is a tiny blue bubble of blown glass. Banner examines the tiny mark’s breath, a beginning, an end, an in-between, and uses it as a signifier of non language.

Fiona Banner, 
Neon Full Stop, 1997
Neon, wire, transformer, wooden box

Fiona Banner
, 1066, 2013
Overhead projectors, paper, acetate

Fiona Banner, 1066, 2013 Fiona Banner, 1066, 2013 Fiona Banner, 1066, 2013 / Anna Barham, Arena, 2013 (foreground) Fiona Banner, Neon Full Stop, 1997 / Stefania Batoeva, Wake me up, 2013 Fiona Banner, Neon Full Stop, 1997