bis 24.04. | #3007ARTatBerlin | The Berlin gallery Schiefe Zähne is currently showing the group exhibition BUFFERS in the Contemporary Fine Arts premises.
CFA is excited to present an exhibition conceived by Schiefe Zähne. By making its structure available to one of the youngest and most aspiring galleries in the city, CFA isn’t only invested in expanding spatial possibilities of Schiefe Zähne. Rather, the common interest lies in opening up new readings by taking unexpected steps during an unusual situation, to tread new paths, where the old ones turned out to be dead ends, and to encourage others to do the same. It is precisely the diversity of programmatic approaches between the two galleries, as well as of their respective audiences, that is much less an obstacle than it is the motivation and reason for this gathering.
… He wear no shoe shine
He got toe jam football
He got monkey finger
He shoot Coca Cola
He say I know you, you know me
One thing I can tell you is you gotta be free
Come together, right now, over me … (John Lennon)
Victoria Colmegna, Tom Humphreys, Lukas Quietzsch, Richard Sides, Philipp Simon, Lise Soskolne, Angharad Williams
The exhibition Buffers brings together works by a number of artists previously shown in solo exhibitions at Schiefe Zähne, with works by Lise Soskolne and Victoria Colmegna.Many of the selected works directly or indirectly evoke elements of public space – outdoor advertising, street lighting, underpasses, motorway signs or revolving doors. Their temporary encounter in this exhibition is the modular construct of an overall scenic picture. In a terse, illusory character, it reflects a world, the one that continues to dissolve into the most diverse of fictionalizations.Grotesque exaggerations of social and political events, such as those found in the cartoon series South Park, are every now and then overshadowed by the real. A tendency which becomes clear here, in turn, begs the question on the relationship between reality, fiction as well as on the layers of images and information that connect them.
The exhibition contrasts decoupled concepts of truth with a series of sign, image, and reference systems that are themselves derailed. The model-like mimesis of structural conditions creates space for deconstruction, ironic transformation, and other forms of distorted reflections of the real.
Despite common references of the works to public space, the approaches of the individual positions are different in terms of content and form. The juxtaposition of this variety of artistic approaches can thereby be read as an involuntary reproduction of a multitude of social bubbles of perception. The exhibition Buffers thus takes place in a field of tension between the individual imaginative spaces of the works themselves on the one hand and – in their totality – as a reflection on the dissection of different conceptions of reality.
Schiefe Zähne is an artist-run gallery founded in 2017 by Hannes Schmidt in Berlin. Exhibitions at SZ have been widely reviewed in the international press (e.g. Frieze, Texte zur Kunst, Artforum). The gallery has also participated in various gallery-share projects and was invited to an institutional exhibition on artist-run galleries in Tokyo last year. This year, SZ is represented at Gallery Weekend Berlin for the first time, with an exhibition by Richard Sides (Ars Viva Prize Winner 2020).
Tom Humphreys, Untitled 2014, Fliesen, Keramik-Transferdruck,
181 x 91 x 3,5 cm | 71 1/4 x 35 3/4 x 1 1/3 in
VICTORIA COLMEGNA *1986, lives and works in Buenos Aires
“I had rented a house outside the city as a studio. The poolside installation was a private event without any publicity. I wanted to spread a structure, similar to a quadrille chess burberry pattern over a pool, like decorating a dining room table or making a large-scale drawing. You make the decisions as you do them. This house served not only as my studio, but also as a sanctuary and backdrop. Making a work in a house, rather than a typical studio with white walls, brings you closer to hedonism. By changing details of the rented house, it’s like playing inside a three-dimensional sculpture, reshaping it. During the process, I also thought about the different decorative arrangements people make in their homes and how external viewers then later
analyze them and try to classify these design choices.
Maybe I just wanted to fool around, do some over-the-top things and then invite guests over to see my installation. One summer when I was 6 or 7 years old, I did a lot of flipping through architecture magazines that came in the mail.
This pool could also be an idyllic crime scene. Crime as an event … being guilty of something done. I also thought of pools in the history of music. The work will become a whole series of decorated pools. The installation will take 2 days each and I photograph what happens in them and around them.”
TOM HUMPHREYS *1972 in Essex, lives and works in London
The photographs of passers-by in the works of Tom Humphreys are applied as a transfer foil to an image surface provided by rectangular tiles. The people are cut out of the background, but parts of the surrounding space suggesting street scenes remain. Turned away from the viewer, the figures seem to be moving away. The industrial ceramic surface evokes subway stations or underpasses, the strangers merge with their surroundings into a single plane. Traces of paint partially covering the surface suggests a positioning of the works in the medium of painting. There is no indication that the photographed subjects are aware of the photograph being taken. Who they are is just as unclear. The view of them is objectifying, but based on the posture, hairstyles, and clothing, it might be possible to draw conclusions on the social background of those observed.
LUKAS QUIETZSCH *1985, lives and works in Berlin
The work gemeine Absichten aus alter Ferne (auf der A9) shows a scene on a highway in shadowy form. The individual elements are formally reduced, the colours appear ecstatically overdriven and dull at the same time. Streetlamps fringe a roadway in a perspective displacement, a large-format street sign with its arrows shows possible exits and directions. The lack of an inscription, however, leaves the viewer uncertain of her whereabouts at the moment, as well as which direction to take
RICHARD SIDES *1985, UK, lives and works in Berlin
The word disinformation is written on a spinning object in simple handwriting. Without graphic or pictorial elements that would emphasize the statement, the object rotates slowly and continuously around its own axis. The spinning surfaces, reminiscent of a revolving door, have a hypnotic effect that contradicts the emptiness of the white surfaces. Richard Sides thus counters an increasingly overlapping world of information with a simple feedback. Humorously, Sides insists on the hardly refutable thesis of disinformation generated by the information overflow. In doing so, the work almost incidentally points out the quiet but potent effect of conditioning through repetition.
Another work by the artist in this exhibition is reminiscent of a showcase and an architectural model at once. Mounted with its short side against the wall, the object stands strangely far into the room. Inside, a stepped arrangement of levels tapers the interior, which is lit by daylight through an opening at the far end.
Soft street noises together with the rattling of wagons on tracks emanate from this space. The sounds are overlaid with set pieces of spherical drone sounds, jazz and pop music. This creates a strongly narrative stage-like space.
PHILIPP SIMON *1987 in Berlin, lives and works in Berlin
The handmade glass bodies of the lanterns, whose shape is reminiscent of the outdoor lighting of a historic old town alley, are attached to industrially produced angles and cables. This abrupt constructive level appears like an unveiled substructure, that is possibly still to be concealed by later structural measures.
Anachronistically, two temporal planes run against each other here, each reflecting the tendency to want to revive historical elements in a contemporary aesthetic. Often this is a recollection that is as diffuse as it is transfigured.
Philipp Simon’s work Nürnberg is an alloy of different categories and reflects on the mashup character of our present: the fusion of all spheres with each other, both past and imagined.
LISE SOSKOLNE *1971 in Toronto, lives and works in New York
Sources as diverse as Internet search queries or, in the case of the painting Eyeballs / Eggs, found print advertisements for antidepressants dating back to the 1970s, form the starting points for Soskolne’s paintings.
While transferring these pictorial spaces to the canvas, an intensive investigation of the original scope of the motifs takes place. At the same time, through the process of painting, the artist explores the possibilities of her predominantly photographic sources to find their own place in her work. The already transferred images are sometimes almost completely overlaid by new motifs (Eyeballs / Eggs) or, as in the case of Humour Then, supplemented by this very headline, in the form of large, blue-framed letters.
Soskolne’s work can be read as the personal chronicle of an inevitable confrontation with media images and their contexts. This becomes clear not only in her openness regarding the origin of her sources*, but also in the choices concomitant of her painting process. These impressions are, in the crossover to the context of her paintings, almost archivally united in Soskolne’s oeuvre.
*The catalogue The Mandelbrot Set, published to accompany the exhibition of the same name at Svetlana (NYC), largely reveals the sources for Soskolne’s paintings.
**As part of her exhibition at Kunstverein Nürnberg (2020), a collection of provenance protocols documenting choices made during the painting process was published, as well as locations and considerations of found objects.
ANGHARAD WILLIAMS *1984 in Ynys Môn, Wales, lives and works in Berlin
The work Prisoners by Angharad Williams shows a backlit blue surface on which white font and a white framed photo are arranged. Together, the statements convey an oppressive narrowness, which – for a campaign supposedly designed for the urban space – is unusual. That questions are a burden for others, answers on the other hand a prison for oneself, leaves no room to manoeuvre. Skilfully, any form of dialectical communication is discredited; in its closed form, the statements appear patriarchal and disempowering.
The photograph of the crying person is a press image of the young American student Otto Warmbier who in 2016, was prosecuted in North Korea having been accused of stealing a poster during a visit to the country. His sentence was 15 years of hard labour for ‘hostile activities’. A year later, when Warmbier was finally extradited to the USA, he was in a comatose state and later died. Thereupon his family and the American government claimed that he had been tortured in North Korea. However, this thesis could never be verified and was later doubted even by Western media.
Exhibition period: Monday, 29th March – Saturday, 24th April 2021To the Gallery
Exhibition BUFFERS – CFA Berlin | Zeitgenössische Kunst – Contemporary Art Guide | Exhibitions Berlin Galleries | ART at Berlin