BASED IN BERLIN
From 8 June – 24 July, Berlin presents work by eighty local artists for “Based in Berlin: Exhibition of Berlin Contemporary Art.” The city-run, multi-media, showcase will include lectures, studio visits and an array of shows throughout the city. Here are our ten top highlights of contributing artists, events and satellite exhibitions from the extraordinary program at http://www.basedinberlin.com/
Alexandros Tsolakis, Bastian Wibranek and Sebastian Kriegsmann
36 May – 9 July 2011
+49 (0)30 39509316
Program’s remarkably dynamic installation based series of exhibitions are more than “based in Berlin,” they define the city’s thoughtful yet playful mentality. ”Disconnect,” by Alexandros Tsolakis, Bastian Wibranek and Sebastian Kriegsmann reflects Berlin’s communal character and highlights the city’s collaborative nature. The three international artists stretched a fabric membrane across the gallery floor – complicating individual movements and forcing each viewer to shift their body according to the pressure of their fellows pushing through the space. The visual effect resembles a blizzard but unlike lone footprints in snow, participants are connected through their movements.
Like a DJ spinning records, Korean-born and Berlin-based artist Sunah Choi arranges an unexpected selection of stimulating images from a background booth, which she then projects across the vernissage space. Choi combines abstract images with patterns made directly on the projector by her hands moving ordinary objects across the machine’s surface. Choi’s graceful shadow-play is a compelling use of the exhibition’s central space at Atelierhaus Monbijoupark.
“Pattern of Habit”
08 June – 10 September 2011
Oranienburger Straße 18
10178 Berlin, Germany
+49 (0) 30 28884030
Andrea Zittel’s hub in Joshua Tree, CA excludes the prominent conceptual artist from direct participation in “Based in Berlin” but her solo show at Sprüth Magers promises to be a significant contribution to the city’s art dialogue. Zittel’s new intellectually challenging installation draws attention to everyday consumption through an arrangement of packing boxes.
Ming Wong’s brilliant performance film ”Kontakthope” is a sharp social satire of art-world interchanges. Wong invited 22 artists and curators to recreate Pina Bausch’s choreography. Bausch exaggerated everyday gestures into stylized and symbolic movement demonstrating the fraught dynamics between men and women. Instead, Wong’s version highlights the delicate little dances conducted by art-world participants. As Wong shows, social relations in the art-world are often as intricate, difficult to decipher, emotionally charged and flexible as any court-dance.
10 June – 09 July 2011
Galerie Johann König, Berlin
Dessauer Straße 6-7
+49 (0)30 26 10 30 80
California born and based conceptual artist Lisa Lapinkski creates jolly collections of symbolically subversive sculptures. Her aesthetic is kitschy and deceptively delightful but her meaning is often unnerving. She infuses her complex philosophical and historical references with good cheer.
“Living in a Bubble?”
22 June 19:00
Although English is the lingua franca of Berlin’s art community, the launch of a German-language edition of Frieze cements Berlin’s standing as the nexus for international art. For “Living in a Bubble?” Frieze d/e Editor Jennifer Allen and Assistant Editor Dominikus Müller will discuss the ramifications of Berlin based art-insiders who refuse to learn the local language (ie: me) yet consider themselves invested members of the city’s thriving art community. They ask: what are the rights, obligations and affiliations for art-nomads eager to take root in Berlin? How does the multi-national nature of Berlin’s young art scene affect its relationship to German, Europe and the overall global art world? And, when will we drop English and become true Berliners?
SILENT SCREAMS AND DEAFENING WHISPERS
For his performance, Erik Bünger encourages viewers to explore the notion of an “artistic voice” and the limitations of language. “Silent Screams and Deafening Whispers” conjures up the voices of a Gold Rush era prospector, a man’s missing brother and the empty space between lines in an etching. These unlikely characters speak through Bünger and invited guests.
HUSH HUSH – OOZESTANVAGANZA
Christopher Kline is a blossoming art/rock star whose captivating blend of r&b, soul, dance and performance art found fruition when he formed Hush Hush in 2010. His work with Wooden Veil, Snakebird and other local musicians established the America artist as a prominent figure in Berlin’s underground music scene. Now, Hush Hush is touring North America before returning to celebrate the opening of “Based in Berlin” which a writhing, raucous, stage show.
Jan Peter Hammer
But what are the real external and internal factors determining success in the art world? In his series of short films the German artist, Jan Peter Hammer, investigates the question “What qualities determine and shape our course? –Talent, intelligence, willpower, privilege, capital or luck?” His filmic approach is aesthetic but retains a documentary style distance through interviews and pseudo-sociological research. We’re eager for his findings.
HANS ULRICH OBRIST TALK
17 July 16:00 – 19:00
A talk by Hans Ulrich Obrist is not a surprise but always a treat. The vastly accomplished curator is a regular presence at international art forums and his uniquely strong investment in Berlin remains an asset to the city’s art community. His talk promises to provide a firm conceptual foundation for Berlin’s diverse art activity.