Robert Montgomery: Echoes of Voices in the High Towers
mono.log #01 published by mono.kultur
Documentation of Robert Montgomery’s fleeting public works that most likely had a lasting effect on you this past summer are now accessible in a stunning, three part publication for private consumption and enjoyment thanks to mono.kultur’s latest publishing venture, mono.log.
In keeping with the mono.kultur model, the section “Alive in the Sunlight” printed on A5 paper contains two conversations, one from 2008 with Jérôme Sans, and the other from this year with Manuel Wischnewski of Neue Berliner Räume, the organizer of Montgomery’s Berlin project. The other two sections contain the most comprehensive catalogue of Montgomery’s work to date: “Early Morning Now” covering work from 2004-2012 and “Echoes of Voices in the High Towers” representing the Berlin summer project. The scale of these two sections makes the publication truly special; folding out to the A1 size (and unbound), flipping though this work is no casual task.
Montgomery’s unsigned work on billboards and in German magazines presents the opportunity for an unexpected encounter with the work, an engagement with strangers that reaches beyond the typical art world audience, as pieces of thought provoking poetry sitting on top of layers of advertisements. This work is now being presented as an object that goes back into the art system. There is a difference between stumbling upon one of the anonymous works on the street (or in the magazines) as a surprise and being able to read the works as a whole. “Early Morning Now” condenses time and “Echoes of Voices in the High Towers” condenses the city into a series of page turns.
I was always happy to come across one of the billboards around Berlin, but normally given the circumstances I was unable to give the work the attention that I would have liked to. For example, distracted by a billboard work spotting on Yorckstrasse, I barely avoided a potentially unpleasant bike crash into a pole. Now with all of the works off the street and presented in an envelope, there is more time to comfortably reflect on the words.