BANKquet etiquette: Too many announcements in your inbox? (2009)

BANK offers a simple solution… just grade them and send them back! Featuring communications by White Cube, Sadie Coles HQ and sophisticated Yanks.

R.J. Preece (ADP)
Art Design Publicity at ADC | 21 September 2009

ADP has only been open for business for just three months, and it’s already starting. The press releases are flying in, as some in our art/design community are eager to add to their column inches of coverage, sometimes at any cost.

You write clear editorial guidelines. You make it clear what you are looking for—and what you do NOT do. And the result? You end up receiving a batch of press releases out of Italy for painting shows that have absolutely nothing to do with your magazine remit. Better still, they are written in Italian which you cannot read…

These impressive press relations strategies in the art world are nothing new, of course, but few have made it an art form. This brings us to BANK, those London-based artist-pranksters who did what many dream of, but would not dare. They simply made comments on releases, graded them and sent them back, or specifically, faxed them back circa 1998.

Check out these little gems of marketing, language and power, I mean “contextualization” of important works of art exhibited by equally important venues… of course!

White Cube got BANK’d

white cube press release

Sadie Coles HQ got BANK’d - 1998

sadie coles hq press release

"Sophisticated Yanks got BANK’d

Plus here’s a "fax-back faxed back" sent to ADP by BANK. This one appears to come from a staff member working at a very sophisticated American venue...

bank press release

Editorial note: BANK supplied a number of text art samples to ADP including a fax-back sent to Paula Cooper Gallery in New York. We declare our interests here. So, as BANK was informed, we could not consider this one. Why? Not only was this specific piece clearly of "lower aesthetic quality", the behind-the-scenes reality is this: a close colleague adores Ms. Cooper’s work and this could cause all sorts of Continental drama... If you’d like to see this artwork however, please contact BANK, but please note it is a highly misinformed piece... trust us... really!