Hängung #11Hängung #11
Hängung #11

Hängung #11: CONSTRUCTIVE CONTRADICTION – Tension Areas in the Artistic Process

Januar, 26th  - June, 9th 2014

Hängung #11: Constructive Contradiction. The title of the eleventh exhibition at KUNSTWERK – the collection of Alison and Peter W. Klein – will be irritating on initial reading or hearing. What is hidden behind the title? What does it mean? Perhaps you initially think of “contradiction” as a categorical “no” that opposes what has been expressed so far and allows no further debate. However: contradiction can also be a reply that initiates a productive dialogue. In the “to and fro” of the arguments, things become clear; in the mutual exchange, you get to the bottom of things. The works and groups of works selected for the exhibition from the collection of Alison and Peter W. Klein provide a visual representation of artistic arguments, which develop tension areas from the principle of speech and reply and which also make these available for the viewers to experience.

The presentation of the individual style of an artist is shaped by art history; it is expressed in a specific form that can be attributed to him alone and is recognisable as such. We tend to associate names of artists with consistently recognisable artistic signatures. The works presented in the first section of the exhibition contradict the idea of stylistic coherence. From the very start of the exhibition, two works by Chris Succo reflect different results of the artist’s engagement with the materials and processes he has selected. The paintings by Franziska Holstein on the first floor of KUNSTWERK reflect her development in the tension area of objective figurative and constructive abstract work. Wall installations with thread drawings, small-scale works in ink and pieces in larger formats mark divergent cornerstones of the graphical area of exploration of Carolin Jörg.

As a real contradiction and in opposition to the political boundaries of artistic creation, a series of works on the second floor represents items of state nonconformist art in the GDR and the USSR. In rejecting the ideological and aesthetic rules defined by the party and the state, artists in both countries were excluded from the official channels of art funding and art dissemination. In the exhibition, examples of nonconformist art in the GDR include paintings by Michael Morgner, Hermann Glöckner and Max Uhlig, which are presented in an array with printed graphical works by Gerhard Altenbourg, Carlfriedrich Claus, Eberhard Göschel, Thomas Ranft, Dagmar Ranft-Schinke and Claus Weidensdorfer. Major representatives of the unofficial art in the USSR can be seen on the wall opposite the pieces. The works of Ivan Chuikov and Dimitrij Prigov are indicative of “Moscow conceptualism” here. Leonid Sokov and Alexander Kosolapov are regarded as major items of “SOZ art”.

On the top floor, the “Spacebox No. 1” installation of young artist Manuel Knapp, who lives in Mühlacker, opens the third chapter of the exhibition, “Tension Areas – With Tensioned Threads”. Using black thread, he creates a space body, which contradicts the plumb line of real space and places the perception of the viewer in a tension area between the room and the apparent room. Whereas the seemingly contradictory shifts to the relationship of objective reality and subjective perception with Manuel Knapp, the works by artist Chiharu Shiota from Japan, who lives in Berlin, and the photographs of Jyrki Paratainen from Finland lead to an inner world in which conflicting forces have an existential and emotive effect. Limiting, tying down and restricting are the big human issues that give these works a voice.

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