Inaugural Speech

© Generali Foundation Collection—Permanent Loan to the Museum der Moderne Salzburg

Andrea Fraser

Inaugural Speech, 1997

Video, color, sound, 25 min Director, performer, script: Andrea Fraser Produced by: Andrea Fraser, inSITE 97


Artwork text

Inaugural Speech documents Fraser’s live performance at the opening of the exhibition “inSITE97” in San Diego/Tijuana. Following official speakers reading letters from U.S. and Mexican Presidents Clinton and Zedillo, Fraser takes the podium to deliver five speeches rolled into one. Addressing the audience first as an artist then as an exhibition organizer then as a trustee then as a public official and finally as a corporate sponsor, Inaugural Speech looks at the pyramid of power for which artists and art audiences form the base of support. Introducing herself with each “speech” and then thanking herself for the generous introduction, Fraser implodes the rituals of mutual recognition and legitimating that cement the bonds between different interests in contemporary international art exhibitions. (Andrea Fraser)