Tautes Heim – Living in a UNESCO World Heritage Building

February 12, 2019

The rentable museum apartment ‘Tautes Heim’ is a project started by landscaping architect Katrin Lesser and graphic designer Ben Buschfeld. Planned by Bruno Taut it is located in the Unesco World Heritage ‘Hufeisensiedlung’ and won the EU-Prize for Cultural Heritage/Europa-Nostra-Award in 2013. Katrin Lesser and Ben Buschfeld bought the 65 sqm house in 2010 and renovated it with monument conservation guidelines over a period of only two years. Visitors and architecture fans can rent ‘Tautes Heim’ for an authentic living experience.

Miriam has met the two for an interview:

MB: How does your day start?

BB: We are both freelancers and early birds, therefore – fortunately –  we need no alarm clock. Our day starts with a relaxed breakfast, shower and a fruit salad but shortly after we start working.

MB: Where is the ‘Tautes Heim’ located and how did the idea of it come up? 

KL: For almost 20 years we have lived in the Hufeisen settlement, just 100 meters away from ‘Tautes Heim’.  We feel very comfortable here and are both committed to historic preservation, have repeatedly published on the settlement and also offer guided tours ourselves. From my point of view, a guided tour includes visiting the interior. The reason is simple: the high quality of living behind colorful facades can only be experienced from within the building. Back then „light, air and sunshine“ was the slogan of the planners. The new housing should become a contrast to the dark tenement blocks of that time.

Tautes Heim, Außenansicht, (www.tautes-heim.de)

MB: How did you manage to let a house with world heritage status privately on a daily basis?

KL: It has a lot to do with the transformation to individual property in this area, in contrast to other settlements of the “Berliner Moderne”. It makes it more difficult ensuring a homogeniously monument preservation. From this situation we have initiated several projects that pursue a knowledge transfer relating to monuments and at the same time address neighbors, politics and externals. Thankfully we are well connected locally and know many houses of the settlement from the inside. One day we accompanied friends of neighbors during the inspection of an end-terrace house up for sale. The house – formerly inhabited by an old lady – was quite run down and in extreme need of renovation. The friends quickly rejected but we were immediately excited and have been looking for a possibility to make it accessible to third parties since.

After having tried to achieve funds unvailingly we came up with the idea of a temporary furnished living space according to museums standard. We took the risk jumping into work and now hope to refinance our private investment through renting. It is fun but also a long idealistic process which was only possible by the experience we bring along.

Hufeisen Settlement, (www.tautes-heim.de)

Hufeisen Settlement, aerial view, (www.tautes-heim.de)

MB: Your are a couple, do you split the responsibilities for this project? I know for example that you Katrin, are a landscaping architect and have caused the Hufeinsen settlement to become a garden monument. And Ben, what role do you play?

BB: I am a communication designer with focus on architecture and contemporary history, and so far consider myself to some degree a professional. The whole planning and restoration work is a real ‘couples-project’. Over a period of two years we’ve been working together almost every weekend designing and making choices. Only later we split the work. Katrin has much more competence in garden issues and is also a great site manager. I myself on the other hand was able to demonstrate my PR-skills and took care of the photos, website, networking, etc.

Tautes Heim, Living Room, (www.tautes-heim.de)

MB: Temporary residents and architecture fans can stay overnight and also work at ‘Tautes Heim’. There is a desk and a wifi connection. What about cooking, can I rent the house and invite guests for dinner?

KL: Theoretically, yes. Even though the house is full with originals of the Bauhaus era, simultaneously the kitchen is functionally fully equipped. Modern comfort in the form of a fridge and a dish washer has been achieved by hiding the devices conveniently behind the kitchen front. Also the charming „backofix“ stove does its duty. However, it is no high-end equipment and the 65 sqm house is relatively small. Insofar it is not a place for extensive culinary events. Up to four people can be comfortably catered though. Besides, in spring and summer you can enjoy sitting outside on the terrace in front of the house.

 

Tautes Heim, Kitchen, (www.tautes-heim.de)

Tautes Heim, Bedroom, (www.tautes-heim.de)

MB: How does your day end, do you enjoy cooking?

BB: Yes, I love cooking – more than Katrin actually. But we eat and cook regularly, consciously and healthy – not only for us, but also for our friends and guests. This however takes time of which we lack a bit of these days.

MB: Recipe idea?

BB: This weekend, we are invited to a birthday of a friend and are supposed to contribute something to the buffet. I think we will prepare a mousse auch chocolat and an exotic asian salat – both not typical meals of the 1920ies though.

Tautes Heim, Chamber, (www.tautes-heim.de)

Römer + Römer’s new exhibition on view at Haus am Lützowplatz

January 18, 2019

The exhibition ‚Burning Man – Electric Sky’ runs from January 18 to March 10, 2019. Nina and Torsten Römer are a German-Russian artist couple. Both studied painting in the Academy of Düsseldorf and were master students of A.R. Penck. Already during their studies they collaborated artistically. Their works were displayed in many exhibitions including Manifestina Zurich, the 56. Venice Biennial 2015, the CCA Andratx Mallorca and the Palais de Tokyo. Römer + Römer live in Berlin.

Römer + Römer at Burning Man 2017

Miriam spoke to Römer + Römer about their new exhibition:

 

MB: How does your day start?

R+R: We open the window and deeply hope that the Duang Xuan Center in front of us does not burn again – an image we have seen once at the horizon of our Kreuzberg apartment.

MB: You are an artist couple living and working together. How do your works materialize  – do you develop everything together or do you split the procedure somehow amongst each other?

R+R: Ping pong! We develop all our projects together, already since 1998 when we still studied with A.R. Penck in Düsseldorf.  There, we also finished the Meisterschüler degree with a collaborative work. We have no division in our work and realize everything based on a dialogue: from the idea via research through the realization of the concept. The paintings as well get done side by side.

MB: Your most recent show opens right now at Haus am Lützowplatz. What is it exactly you show in „Burning Man / Electric Sky“ whose paintings are based on your participation at the Burning Man Festival in Nevada in 2017?

R+R: Apart from one, all paintings are about the night in Black Rocky City, the temporary town of the “Burning Man”. The focus of our series lies in the fire and particularly in the interaction of the burner with all these phenomena. Also, we do not intend to represent the whole festival – our painterly interest is specifically in these aspects. The paintings are mostly large scale, the biggest is a diptych of 2,30 x 6 meter.

exhibition view at Haus am Lützowplatz, photo: Eric Tschernow

MB: What fascinated you most and how do you integrate emotion in the artistic work?

R+R: Emotion talks probably the most through colors, shining out of our paintings. Indeed, many aspects were fascinating to us at Burning Man. It is no festival in the traditional sense but a huge interactive hedonistic art spectacle adventure in the desert! The ‘culture of giving’ is fantastic, there is nothing to buy (apart from ice cream and coffee) and everybody is delighted in making each other happy. It is a completely different social interaction being practiced there.

Rabbit Transit, 2017, oil and acrylic on canvas, 230 x 300 cm, photo: Eric Tschernow

House of Enlightenment, 2018, oil on canvas, diameter: 120 cm, photo: Eric Tschernow

MB: Guideline of your oeuvre is the confrontation with politically and socially relevant major events, for example the Carnival of Rio. Are your latest works based on one another, Kulturkommunismus, Partysträfling? What in particular motivates you in these exceptional situations?

R+R: From distance, the carnival in Rio seems like a big sexy Samba-Party. However, once you are there it becomes quite political. One group for example put the topics racism and slavery into an extreme action. Experiencing the get-together of participants from so many different districts and regions – also from many favelas in the prep station in front of the Sambódromo, the Concentracao – was very exciting. One image series arises from the other. After „Sambódromo“ we worked with the topic of the “Fusion Festival” for several years in which we got immersed five times.
In these collective exception states we are interested in the emerging cosmos of temporary communities. The rules are different than ‘outside’. For us this is the artistic research and therefore a combination of analysis and empathic experience.

LED-Bus, 2018, oil and acrylic on canvas, diameter: 100 cm, photo: Eric Tschernow

MB: Say a few words about your technique…

R+R: In our current works we combine spray and glaze painting on canvases, combined with thousands of hand dabbed spots.

MB: I am very interested in how you translate photography in painting: the pixels on the photograph becoming thousands of handmade dots. Is it a way of consolidating the snapshot via painting and is supposed to convey a moment of contemplation?

R+R: On the one side, the dots are a reference to the pixels and on the other our idea is to achieve a certain liveliness and shimmer by dissolving the shapes in the paintings. After that the effect of looking ‘frozen’ is gone and it becomes something cinematic. The process of painting is a very concentrated one and creates lots of energy.

Art, 2017, oil on canvas, 100 x 130 cm, photo: Eric Tschernow

7:30 between GlamCocks and Contraptionists, 2018, oil and acrylic on canvas, 230 x 300 cm, photo: Eric Tschernow

MB: How does your day end? Do you enjoy cooking and have a recipe idea for us?

R+R: Yes, a simple version of Okonomiyaki:

Mix 100 g flavor, 100 ml water, 1 egg and 10 cm of a peeled and grated yams root, cut 100 g cabbage in thin strips and cut some slices of scallions separately. Add 100g of shrimp and mix everything well. Fry two omelets and eat it with mayonnaise and soy.

Hexagon Lounge, 2017, oil on canvas, 150 x 180 cm, photo: Eric Tschernow

Regina Maria Möller at Michael Janssen Gallery Berlin

November 16, 2018

Regina Maria Möllers’ exhibition ‚The Moth’ runs until November 17, 2018 at Janssen Gallery Berlin. Born in Munich Möller firstly took up her studies at the Philosophical Faculty of Ludwig Maximilians University. She spent a large part of her career as a professor/visiting professor as well as artist (since 1993) amongst others in New York, Stockholm, at the NTNU Trondheim, Singapore as well as MIT in Cambridge. Today she lives in Berlin. With ongoing and often interdisciplinary projects such as ‚regina’ or ‚embodiment’ Möller focuses on socially relevant topics that partly autobiographical. She consistently works at the interface between culture and everyday life.

GoArt! meets Regina Maria Möller.

MB: Regina, how does your day start?

RMM: When I am in Berlin I usually go to the SSE – I swim.

MB:  At first glance, the gallery showcase is covered with a heavy black curtain. Entering the front space the visitor is confronted with a stage-like set of historical theatre curtains. Only after passing through does he reach the props warehouse, which is in the backspace of the gallery, exhibiting more of your works. Consequently, it becomes an indirect stage direction for the viewer – what role does the moth play in this production?

RMM: During the exhibition visitors pass the gallery through the main curtain and thus become participants. There is a shadow play in the center of the “stage” and by moving the curtains it reveals a new perspective to the viewer. Dramaturgy and orientation move circular – similar to the behavior of moths orbiting round the light while simultaneously being attracted by darkness. In this case I am referring to the ‘clothes moth’. An unwelcome visitor in our wardrobes, but at the same time it is a quality guarantee in digitally and plastic dominated ages: their larvae live on keratin, a protein that is a component of an animals fur and horn. Therefore fibres of high quality like wool and silk are a desirable resource for larvae.

Generally speaking, a heavy theatre curtain is often associated with something dusty in which thousands of moths larvae are romping about. It is penetrated, eaten and if it is not conserved in a theatrical prop it consequently lands in an old stuff bag. Moreover, the fabulous creature ‘The Mothman’ is an allegory for the Grim Reaper and so do the clothes moths remind of the Ephemeral.  For me, this is a memento mori to our senses and to material as a tangible body.
In addition, the porcelain vases come into play: For the first time they are endowed with a moth motif and produced together with Uli Aigner One Million as well as with the porcelain manufacturer Nymphenburg. Handcraft and porcelain production have taken on a new significance in our technological world. All the more I love its delicacy and imperfection. Like so many materials I work with porcelain has its own character – a life – that provides surprises. So does the moth.

MB: Originally, you have a theoretical background, and among others studied art history. 1994 you also emerged as an artist with works like the magazine ‘regina’ and the label ‘embodiment’ – designing dresses, wallpapers and furniture as well as art works. Noticeable are the biographical components, for example, ‘Reproduktionen’ or other photo works, even the robes in it function as requisites. Do you place yourself in the genre of the self-portraying artist?

RMM: Generally, I do not consider myself an art piece and do not stage myself as an artist. But as an author, an artist, I naturally identify with my works and in this sense each piece leaves an imprint, an image of myself. On the one hand important issues of ‘regina’ and ’embodiment’ is the question of identities showing themselves in everyday life – intercultural and medial – for example via ‘clothing’ (dresses, textiles, interieur). But also the attribution and penetration of role models are of particular relevance. In our fast pace digital age people use multiple identities. Like this biographies become a mirror of a entertainment society. Nevertheless ‘regina’ and ‘embodiment’ go back to the 90ies where these issues were still quite different. Today they have a new relevance – their physical (embodiment) and analogue (regina) presence.

MB: To me, objects in the show awaken protagonists of the cultural life like the Brechtian curtain, a time travel through different epochs and genre. Is the moth synonym for a pioneering spirit of researchers, for artists, even for you, in your artistic context?

RMM: No. But it is part of it.

MB: Besides, a topic that interests me a lot is food – also part of ‘regina’ -of course in a vital way. The social importance of food, of nutrition, up to recipes. What place does food/cooking have in your artistic context?

RMM: The Eat Art concept of Daniel Spoerri has taught me early on how closely art and cooking are interlinked. To me the kitchen is a meeting place. Communal cooking and eating create the climate for fruitful exchanges between cultures. I myself enjoy cooking and I like carefully prepared tables – simple as well as magnificent – but always elaborate ones. Besides, there is king Louis II of course – the fairy tale king of Bavaria – with the fabulous ‘Wishing Table’…

MB: Recipe idea?

RMM: Re-educating our senses and sensors.

Berlin Art Week 2018

October 5, 2018

With the Berlin Art Week 2018 happening from September 26th-30th the Berlin art scene prepares for the upcoming fall season. Visitors from all over the world had the chance to see a vast range of internationally established as well as emerging artists in various Berlin institutions, private collections, galleries and project spaces.

‘Open House for Open Minds’ is the slogan of the Deutsche Bank Kunsthalle in its new spaces of Palais Populaire in the former Prinzessinnenpalais Unter den Linden. Already at the beginning of the year, the recently appointed director of the Martin Gropius Bau, Stephanie Rosenthal, announced a focus on contemporary and experimental tendencies in the 2018 program. Consequently, “Crash” (on view until Januar 13th 2019) is the first solo show there of Lee Bul, Korean-born artist living in Berlin. The show includes sculpture, paintings, prints, drawings and spatial installations.  

Other focal points of this year’s Berlin Art Week 2018 is the opening of EMOP – European Month of Photography at C/O Berlin and Agnieszka Polskas solo show at Hamburger Bahnhof.

Evidently, art berlin and Positions Berlin are two of the pinnacles in those September days.  Lately located in the hangars of the former Tempelhof airport neighboring the well frequented Tempelhofer Feld galleries found a prime location for the numerous art lovers from Berlin and abroad.

What GoArt! clients liked during their Berlin Art Week 2018 hopping: a new revival of ceramic and glass works in the context of fine arts. A gallery owner who has been in the business of the genre for over 25 years now is the trendsetter Geer Pouls: For the first time he participated with Brutto Gusto Fine Arts at the art berlin.

GoArt! Berlin consulting

 

Paloma Proudfoot @Soy Capitán, Art Berlin

Carole Feuerman @Galerie Hübner+Hübner, Positions Berlin

Ashley Scott & H.M. Davringhausen @White Square Gallery, Positions Berlin

Brutto Gusto Fine Arts, Art Berlin

Julius Weiland @Lorch+Seidel Contemporary, Positions Berlin

Jelena Bulajic's painting is mirrored in the work by Tarik Kiswanson @carliergebauer, Art Berlin

Šejla Kameriç @Galerie Tanja Wagner, Art Berlin

Karin Sander @Esther Schipper, Art Berlin

Eva & Adele in front of the booth of Galerie Neu with works by M.C. Chaimowicz, Art Berlin

Christian Hoosen @Tore Süssbier, Art Berlin

Zilla Leutenberger @Palais Populaire

Alicja Kwade @Galerie König

Alexander Golder @Fuchs Galerie

Matthew Brandt @C/O Berlin

World Press Photo 18 Berlin

World Press Photo
June 12, 2018

The World Press Photo Award 2017 goes to the photographer Ronaldo Schemidt. He photographed José Víctor Slazar Balza (28) during the protests against the Venezuelan government, who was caught in flames when the tank of motorcycle exploded. Balza survived with severe burns.

The annual World Press Photo Arward is the world’s largest and most prestigious competition for press photography. Since 1955, the mission oft he World Press Photo Foundation has been „to maintain high professional standards in photojournalism and to advocate a free and unrestricted exchange of information“.

Altogether more than 4500 photographers with 73,000 photos took part in the competition. All award-winning photos will be shown in an exhibition that will be shown in 45 countries. Freundeskreis Willy-Brandt-Haus, Gruner+Jahr and the magazines Stern and Geo present the World Press Photo exhibition for the 15th time in the Willy-Brandt-Haus.

Exhibition: June 8th – July 1st, 2018, Willy-Brandt-Haus Berlin

World Press Photo 18

Installation View

World Photo Press 18

Installation View

World Photo Press 18

Installation View

World Photo Press 18

Long-Term Projects, 1st Prize, Carla Kogelman, The Netherlands, I am Waldviertel, 19 July 2012 - 29 August 2017 > Hannah and Alena are two sisters who love in Merkenbrechts, a bioenergy village of around 170 inhabitants in Waldviertel, an isolated rural area of Austria, near the Czech border.

World Photo Press 18

Carla Kogelman, Hannah und Alena, 2017

World Photo Press 18

Environment, 1ste Prize Stories, Kadir van Lohuizen, The Netherlands, NOOR Images, 23 February 2016 - 9 July 2017 > Humans are producing more waste than ever before. According to research by the World Bank, the world generates 3.5 million tonnes of solid waste a day, ten times the amount of a century ago. A documentation of waste management systems in metropolises across the world investigates how different societies manage-or mismanage-their waste.

World Photo Press 18

Kader van Lohuizen, Garbage is collected in the center of Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

World Photo Press 18

Environment, 3rd Prize Singles, Thomas P. Peschak, Germany 1 Mach 2017 > A historic photograph of an African penguin colony, taken in the late 1890s, is a stark contrast to the declining numbers seen in 2017 in the same location, on Halifax Island, Namibia. The colony once numbered more than 100,000 penguins.

World Photo Press 18

Long-Term Projects 2nd Prize, Fausto Podavini, Italy, Omo Change, 24 July 2011 - 24 November 2017 > The Gibe III Dam across the Omo River in Ethiopia impacts not only people living along the Omo Valley, but those around Lake Turkana (into which the Omo empties) in Kenya. People of eight different ethnicities live along the valley in delicate balance withe the environment.

World Photo Press 18

Fausto Pdavini, Murrst women, wearing bras given to them by tourists, return to their village after fetching well water.

World Photo Press 18

A man from the Mursi ethnic group prepares for a traditional stick-fighting contest against a neighboring village.

World Photo Press 18

People, 2nd Prize Stories, Anna Boyiazis, USA 17 October - 29 December 2016 > Traditionally, girls in the Zanzibar archipelago are discouraged from learning how to swim, largely because of the strictures of a conservative islamic culture and the absence of modest swimwear.

World Photo Press 18

Anna Boyiazis, Students from the Kijini Primary School learn to swim and perform rescues, off Muyuni.

World Photo Press 18

Anna Boyiazis, Swimming instructor Chema (17) snaps her fingers as she disappears underwater, in the ocean near the village of Nungwi.

Food Revolution 5.0

Food Revolution
May 18, 2018

The museum of Decorative Art in Berlin has openend the by Dr. Claudia Banz curated show Food Revolution 5.0 on May 18, 2018. Themes such as food in the future, dwindling resources or climate change make nutrition to a hot political issue. What scenarios develop artists for the food of tomorrow? Miriam Bers met the curator of Food Revolution 5.0 and the Museum for Decorative Arts.

MB: Food Revolution 5.0 has already been shown at the Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe in Hamburg. There, the participating artists had developed commissioned works. Will you exhibit the same pieces in Berlin?

CB: Yes, more or less but we could enlarge the show by other new important contributions. So also an exhibition is an open project. In Berlin, we work much more in the outer space. In the ‘Piazzetta’ comes an “Urbane Streuobstwiese” (urban meadow orchard) into being, a project of the Dutch city planner and designer Ton Matton. On an up to now unused terrace of the museum the Planwerkstatt of the Technical University of Berlin in cooperation with the landscape architect Katrin Bohn realizes “Essbare Gärten” (eatable gardens). Particularly for this exhibition Silke Riechert has developed the participative installation ”Störung im Schlaraffenland” (disruption in paradise), a critical look at the food industry but at the same time a nutritional knowledge transfer for school children. Susanna Soares and Andrew Folkes show their project “Insects au Gratin”, here researching future food in the context of insects, nutrients and 3 D prints. Chmara.rosinske participate with their work “Mobile Gastfreundschaften” (mobile hospitalities) and the Center for Genomic Gastronomy present their latest project  “ To flavor our teares”.

MB: Food is more and more important and in our western world and became a prior lifestyle topic. Thus, it has lots of exciting societal and aesthetical components, health aspects, then again ecological and political meaning and its downside: lack of food, disappearance of resources and famine. The Austrian Klaus Pichler for example works in a critical and at the same time very aesthetical way on the subject ‘food in abundance’. According to statistics, about one third of the worldwide foodstuffs are discarded. Most of it in industrialized countries. In contrast, 925 Million people are threatened by hunger. What is the message of the exhibition, does it offer alternatives?

CB: Yes, this subject plays a major role in the work of Pichler, as well as in the ones of Kosuke Araki, who designs plates and dishes by food waste, thereby demonstrating that it can be a valuable resource. Our consumption is so important, the respectful treatment of resources. Subtext of most of the works is consumption as a question of attitude and responsibility.

 

MB: What are you referring to with the title Food Revolution 5.0? How is your vision for future food?

CB: The title resulted by beforehand researches: I think in the meantime it has arrived in the center of society that our nutrition system is the main cause of the climate change and that it needs to be changed radically. 5.0 stands for a wise use of technology, connected with traditional cultural techniques and agriculture, handcraft knowledge and DIY, preserving and further specifics of farming. At the same time it stands for degrowth and the idea of commons. The earth’s resources belong to all humans and not only to a few large companies. Accordingly, all men shall have equal access to it.

MB: Are the designers’ works applicable or rather reflections and utopia of future food?

CB: We show best practice examples like an indoor farm growing salad or a mobile beehive for the urban space from the ‘Beecollective’. You will also see a tomato-fish project operating according to the principle of an aquaponic, and a seaweed farm for the building façade. But there are also speculative works such as “Digital Food” from Martí Guixé creating a vision of a customized nutrition. On the other side Johanna Schmeer with her piece “Bioplastic Phantastic” studying possibilities to use bio– and nanotechnological knowledge for the future food production.

 

MB: Would you tell us something about the concepts of Werner Aisslingers or Marije Vogelzang, what is the Sharing Dinner?

CB: Especially for this project Werner Aisslinger developed a communal cooking landscape. It is a hybrid of an archetype hob, arena/steps functioning as a symbiosis of analogue cooking and social aspect of a shared cooking, eating and communication. Marije Vogelzang in “Volumes” presents a possibility to change our eating habits positively.

MB: Berlin is a good example for a city, where creative minds deal with the issue sustainability. Successful urban gardening projects, an increasing number of restaurants and chefs cooking with local ingredients, organic supermarkets, the Berliner Tafel, distributing foodstuffs to deprived persons and last but not least inhouse farming/vertical planting. How do you see this development, do we have a lead role?

CB: yes, absolutely. There is an unbelievable density of different players dealing with the food subject and an interesting start up scene for innovative and sustainable food products and its useful distribution. Besides, Berlin is the first city having a Nutrition Council, based on the Anglo-Saxon model. This is important to create awareness in politics. And there are also lots of exciting art and design projects being seen by an international audience. Berlins  art- and design universities deal with this issue.

MB: Do you like cooking, which are your criteria?

CB: I like cooking and in the meantime check out where products come from. Local and regional ones are very important for me. I go shopping more frequently to reduce my food waste. It is a pity that there are still few stores offering food without packaging – even organic supermarkets use as much as the others.

MB: A recipe idea?

CB: in the meantime, there are also recipe books for insects, within others from the Suisse designer Andrea Staudacher, participating in the show as well. I would spend more time with insects used as food and try different recipes not least due to the new European law permitting insects as aliments.

——————————————————————–

Food Revolution 5.0
Gestaltung für die Gesellschaft von Morgen

May 18th – September 30th, 2018 

GoArt! Food Tours

Food Revolution

Johanna Schmeer, Bioplastic Fantastic, 2014, © Johanna Schmeer

Food Revolution

Klaus Pichler, Erdbeeren, aus der Fotoserie „One third“, 2010-2012, © Klaus Pichler

Food Revolution

Officina Corpuscoli - Maurizio Montalti, System Synthetics, seit 2011, © Maurizio Montalti

Food Revolution

Fraunhofer UMSICHTinFARMING, 2017© Fraunhofer Umsicht 2017

Food Revolution

Chloé Rutzerveld, Edible Growth, 2014, © Chloé Rutzerveld, Foto: Bart van Overbeeke

Food Revolution

Marije Vogelzang, Volumes, 2017, © Marije Vogelzang

Food Revolution

Austin Stewart, Second Livestock, 2014, © Austin Stewart

Impressions from Gallery Weekend Berlin

GoArt! Berlin
April 30, 2018

During the 14th Gallery Weekend – the seasonal start of the art year in Berlin – hundreds of galleries all over the city present their exhibitions that can be considered the highlights of the season, inviting visitors up until June. In established and less known areas throughout Berlin, from Mitte to Kreuzberg and Charlottenburg, galleries opened their doors. GoArt! Berlin was part of it – find some impressions from the Gallery Weekend below.

Galerie Max Hetzler, Goethestraße Charlottenburg

Solo Show: Loris Gréaud – Lady Rogeurs, Sir Loudrage, a still life

Max Hetzer

Contemporary Fine Arts, Charlottenburg

Solo Show: Raymond Petition – … no hugs coming

CFA
CFA

Camera Work, Charlottenburg

Solo Show: Vincent Peters

Camera Work
Camera Work

Galerie Tore Süßbier, Charlottenburg

Solo Show: Christian Hosen – Konkreter wird’s nicht

Tore Süßbier
Tore Süßbier

XC. HuA Gallery, Schöneberg

Duo Show: Fred. H.C. Liang and Tomas Vu’s – Silver Lining

xchua

Blain Southern, Schöneberg

Solo Show: Frank Thiel – Quinceañeras

Solo Show: Liliane Tomasko – a dream of

Blain Southern
Blain Southern

Jürg Judin, Schöneberg

Solo Show: Edouard Baribeaud – An Old Story for Our Modern Times

Judin

Paper Positions, Mitte

Group Show

Paper Positions

ngorongoro – Artist Weekend, Weißensee

Group Show: Christian Achenbach, Tim Noble and Sue Webster, Anselm Reyle

Achenbach
Reyle
Tim Noble and Sue Webster

Photos: GoArt!

Frank Thiel Show: Photo Blain Southern

Paper Positions: Photo Paper Positions

Interview with Berlin Fashion Designer Isabel Vollrath

April 12, 2018

Isabel Vollrath is a German fashion designer, working in the fields of modern Couture and fine art. She was born in 1980 in Freiburg and started her career by learning the craft of gentlemen’s tailoring in Baden-Baden. Afterwards she studied fashion at the renowned art university in Berlin-Weissensee. For Isabel Vollrath, garments are three-dimensional drawings, collages, objects of “sculpture”, sociocritical / political statements and/or “cultural travel reports”. Choosing extraordinary materials and details of high quality while working in an area of tension between fashion and art, the Berlin fashion designer leaves traces with a high recognition factor. By means of integrating both historicizing and avant-garde, sculptural-futuristic stylistic elements, high-contrast, abstract but at the same time figure-hugging cuttings, the resulting silhouettes are expressive and extensive, functioning as in-the- room-lying “bowls” or rather as integrative to the human moving body.

Isabel Vollrath has already received various national and international awards, amongst them the promotion prize of the Wilhelm-Lorch-Foundation, the Elsa-Neumann-scholarship from the state of Berlin, the Baltic Fashion Award (2011) and the award of the “International Talent Support” in Trieste/Italy (2012). 2015 she founded her label I’ VR ISABEL VOLLRATH. Ever since, she shows her collections twice a year during Berlin Fashion Week or in the context of Berlin Salon / Vogue Salon at Kronprinzenpalais. Miriam Bers met the Berlin fashion designer for an interview.

MB: How does the day of a Berlin fashion designer start?

IV: Contrast showers, coffee. Afterwards I jump on my bike and go to early yoga or ballet class. After that, I go to my atelier…

MB: Why a sculptural design-language?

IV: When I finished high school, I actually wanted to study free arts and become a sculptor. At the same time, there was this passion for fashion and the craft of tailoring. So I decided to study tailoring in Gerhard Schmauder’s custom tailor for men in Baden-Baden for three years. This is where I learned how to develop a “second skin” for men out of fabric.

Basically, this was also a kind of “sculpting” and an essential fundament for my following studies in fashion. I guess, in Berlin I am one of the few designers that still fabricate their whole sample collection on their own. For this, I combine my sculptor activities with the technical know-how of tailoring and a very high demand on precision, I observe with the eyes of an artist and still have the necessary sense of functionality in the back of my mind.

 

During the work process, I focus on the message, the statement, a story, an emotion and less on the aim of addressing the consumers of the mass market. The majority of my collection pieces could also be hung on a wall as an art object or be placed inside of a picture frame, instead of being hung in a closet. They function as both: body- and room objects. My collections will always stay limited edition. Only that way, I can stay true to myself and do fashion as well as art. Before I think of elegance, I “romp”: In experiments, in forms, playing with material and cuts – with the curiosity of a child and the “flow” of my hands.

MB: Your oeuvre, summarized in three phrases:

IV: I’d prefer three words: Idiosyncratic. Authentic. Uncompromising.

MB: Which designers inspire you?

IV: There are designers/brands of the past and present, who I really adore and whose life’s work and creations I appreciate a lot. For example those of Coco Chanel, Vivienne Westwood, Rei Kawakubo or Iris van Herpen and Yves Saint Laurent, Alexander McQueen or Hussein Chalayan. I like a strong visual expression, the courage to use extraordinary forms, colors, materials and an individual signature with a recognition value.

MB: Which exposition did you see last?

IV: Actually, I attend openings very often.

That’s why now I’m trying to remember, which expositions really fascinated me during the last months… It’s been a while, but spontaneously I recall “Jonas Burgert: Zeitlaich” at Blainsouthern and „Cornelia Schleime: Full House” at Michael Schultz and obviously also the Biennale in Venice last year. I’m very excited about Gallery Weekend that will be taking place soon.

MB: Which writers inspire you?

IV: Old masters as Goethe.

MB: What is you favorite place in Berlin?

IV: Close to the water and in the country. Or a terrace with a wide view over Berlin’s rooftops or a nice wine bar around the corner. ONE favorite place actually doesn’t exist…

MB: Your place of longing?

IV: Italy. Venice. The sea.

MB: How does the day of a Berlin fashion designer end? By cooking on your own or going out to have dinner?

IV: Extensive cooking – that is rather something I do, when I receive visitors. When I’m alone, I have a salad and a glass of white wine. Or I make plans to have a drink somewhere.

MB: Any idea for a recipe?

IV: For visitors, I always like to serve “antipasto misto”…-colorful vegetables like zucchini, fennel, pumpkin, pepper, rosemary potatoes from the oven – with goat cream and olive oil. This comes with a side salad: radicchio, chicory, lamb’s lettuce – with tomatoes, cucumber, toasted sesame and pomegranate. If desired: wild salmon with a lemon-honey-sauce and wild rice in coconut milk.

MB: When and where can one see your next collection?

IV: The fashion week for spring/summer 2019 starts at the beginning of July. The exact dates of my fashion shows are not definite yet, but they’re being planned and will be announced soon in the calendar of Berlin Fashion Week or  Berlin Salon.

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Photos: Key visual Det Nissen

1/3  Thomas Thernes, 4 Katy Otto, 2 Philipp Wolfart

 

 

Sigrid Neubert – Modern Architecture in Photography

March 28, 2018

Sigrid Neubert (*1927) is one of Germany’s most renowned architectural photographers. In the past six decades, she has produced aesthetic images of modern buildings and urban landscapes. Later, Neubert was also interested in nature photography while creating poetic, partly mystical imagery. A selection of works by Sigrid Neubert is currently on display in the Museum für Fotografie (Museum of Photography) of the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin . The exhibition runs until June 3rd, 2018.

Miriam Bers talked to the two curators of the exhibition – the head of the photography collection of the Kunstbibliothek (Art Library) Dr. Ludger Derenthal, and the architect and art historian Dr. Frank Seehausen.

MB: Mr. Derenthal, according to which criteria do you create your program?

LD: In the Museum of Photography we present the whole history of this important visual medium from its beginning in the middle of the 19th century to the present day, often in thematic exhibitions and with works from our collection.

MB: How did the current cooperation with you and Frank Seehausen come about?

LD: We were very fortunate to have the opportunity to compile a representative selection from the comprehensive archive of Sigrid Neubert and incorporate the works into our collection. Therefore it was our aspiration to create an exhibition that involves her complete oeuvre – landscape and architectural photography. We curated the exhibition together: I was responsible for the nature part and Frank Seehausen, who also wrote the book about Sigrid Neubert’s architectural photography that will soon be published by Hirmer, took care of the architecture section.

MB: The current exhibition with works by Sigrid Neubert summarized in four keywords?

FS: The architectural photography is presented in four thematic chapters as the core of Neubert’s lifework with manifold references to her free work. We aim to encourage visitors to search for points of view, motives, similarities and differences. Archival material and, above all, architectural drawings make the dialogue between the photographer and the architects comprehensible.

LD: Talking about the landscape photography, two aspects are important to me: Sigrid Neubert has used photography both as a medium of expressing emotions as well as a medium for the development of a unique design vocabulary which together form a very instructive contrast.

MB: What do you think about the relationship between Sigrid Neubert’s architectural photography and the New Vision (Neues Sehen)? The press release also refers to 1950s American photography…

FS: In her architectural photography, Neubert has increasingly distanced herself from the US influences of the 1950s and gradually developed her own formal and content-related approach by carefully working out not only the plasticity of the buildings, but also the interaction of the buildings with the environment and its residents. In comparison, we also show works by Julius Shulman, who influenced Neubert in the 1950s.

MB: Architectural photography can be very elaborate. Which techniques did Sigrid Neubert apply? Did she work in a team?

FS: Neubert mostly worked on her own utilizing only a few facilities. For more than 30 years, she used a field camera and preferred to shoot in black and white on 9×12 glass negatives until the 1970s. This generated particularly high-contrast images in perfect technical quality. However, these harsh contrasts – that were characteristics of her work – were not only stylistic device but should also compensate the poor print quality of many architecture magazines. For Neubert it was important to enter an intensive dialogue with the buildings, which in a sense, she regarded as the representative of the architect’s personality.

MB: The current exhibition also includes landscape photography – atmospheric interpretations of the same – that the artist has focused on over the last few decades. How do you explain her dedication to nature?

LD: After many years of producing commission works for architects and magazines, Sigrid Neubert has created her own field of artistic impact. She has always worked in thematic categories, working on some topics for decades. This shows how intensively she has thought about the medium of photography and its possibilities.

MB: Last but not least a question to you, as the two curators of the exhibition: What kind of photography can be found in your living room?

LD: A lightbox with a black-and-white photograph of Reiner Leist showing the skyline of New York.

FS: An architectural photograph by Franz Lazi from Stuttgart produced in 1950.

Photos: © Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, Kunstbibliothek / Sigrid Neubert

Exhibition Info

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Less is more – New York’s Armory Show 2018

March 15, 2018

2018 Armory Show presented itself with a clear layout and less galleries than within the last years and was therefore very pleasant to visit. Up from the welcoming and uncomplicated New Yorker handling of invitations for the specialist audience and collectors who arrived from all over the world, the whole setting of the fair was extremely well organized. The layout of the booths with in between enough space for sculptural works, a great light design, bright carpeting and centrally located bars and lounges were not only photogenic but made the visitor feel very comfortable.

Armory is – like Frieze and Art Basel – one of the most important sales fairs and does not claim an overall overview of all contemporary art trends. On the contrary it communicates an idea of the sophisticated “must haves” of the new season. Lots of excellent art works from the 50s to the 70s such as small Gerhard Richter pieces (each over 600.000 Dollars), Cy Twombly’s, a huge Nam Jun Paik installation at Gagosian and beautiful David Hockney’s made modern art collectors’ hearts beat faster.

Some of the curated booth designs we liked were the ones of Wetterling (Stockholm, among others showing works of Jim Dine, photo left), Marianne Boesky Gallery (New York, with works of Hannah van Bart and Hans Op de Beek) and Mizuma Art Gallery (Tokyo, showing works by Japanese – Australian duo Ken + Julia Yonetani photo above).

However the curated parts such as Focus and Platform/The Contingent also exhibited relevant contemporary art pieces against a political background. Very spectacular was the mural of the well-known French urban artist JR – a huge photo work presented by the Armory Show, Artsy and Deitch Projects- So Close mounted at the Armory buildings’ façade facing Ellis Island – which 12 million immigrants and refugees had passed between 1892 and 1954. It shows a vision of immigrants in a line, created with templates of old photographic Archive material of The Ellis Island Museum of Immigration and recently by JR taken pictures of Syrian refugee camps.

Another eye-catching position was Cry Havoc by young South African artist Mary Sibande (gallery MOMO from Johannesburg and Cape Town, photo left) addressing women’s power boiling over. Last but not least and a discovery at least from a European point of view in the Focus section were the notable powerful collages, textiles and prints of the 1938 in the U.S. born Afro-American artist Emma Amos (at Ryan Lee Gallery, New York), working on gender, racial and geographical perspectives.

 

Art Consulting

J.R. photo: Teddy Wolff, courtesy of The Armory Show

Other photos: courtesy of GoArt! Berlin