960 Main Street
The Cartin Collection began to produce its own projects in 2004 with an exhibition in Miami as part of Art Basel Miami Beach. During 2005 and 2006, the collection will produce a total of nine exhibitions in Hartford, Miami, New London and New York. ex.05.01.06103 marked the first of six exhibitions in the former G. Fox building in Hartford. The goal of the exhibitions in the G. Fox building is to make work from the collection available to people in the area, and to present it in a non-traditional space, that is, outside of a conventional art gallery context there is wider public access.
One of most important administrative tasks in managing any art collection is in many ways the most mundane: assigning the 'accession number.' Each object in a collection has a unique identification number or code, called the accession number. Usually a combination of letters and numbers that, to the trained eye, identify the work of art with some precision; the first part of a code might be part of the artist's name, the second part the date the work was acquired, the third part the number of objects acquired that year by that artist, and so on. To the casual observer, this code is meaningless: but to the professionals who manage and care for all kinds and sizes of collections, the code is all-important.
But the accession code is also a paradox. On one hand, it identifies the work as unique from all other works. On the other, it says little or nothing about its meaning. Yet as meaningless as it is, it is just as valid a way of identifying works of art as any other. Indeed, the artist will often acknowledge the difficulty and even irrelevance in naming a work, thus the frequent use of "Untitled."
The "title" of this exhibition, then, is not a title at all, as there is no need for one. It is simply a code, an identification number for this first exhibition of 2005. EX marks this project as an exhibition, 05 marks the year of the exhibition, 01 identifies this exhibition as the first of 2005, and 06103 is the zip code of where the exhibition is taking place. The strategy at work here is simple. To title or name an exhibition is to suggest something of what the exhibition means. In this case, however, its only purpose is to exhibit unusual and visually engaging objects, and it makes absolutely no argument or claim about art, society, politics, fashion or anything else.