Wednesday, February 27, 2008

hilgemann galerie

best of the bunch, below drawings by Lina Jabbour:

Monday, February 25, 2008

doctor's office...or gallery?

Some berlin galleries love name plaques. I found a bunch in the Kochstrasse district where two main mazelike buildings of galleries mingle with medical and architectural businesses. It is all very formal yet another funny example of how art and everyday life mix in this city!

paper 8 @ upstairs berlin

upstairs berlin

butt johnson, Controllers (above) Et in Arcadia ego (below)

anna genger, The aberration of the heart

simon schubert, O.T. -these are really hard to capture in a photo but they are architectural space perspectives (staircases and halls) done by only folding the paper - so lines you see are actually creases!

pablo alonso, Ancestors (above) Primitives (below)

julien collieux @ galerie 5213

From the ominous, back entrance exterior, galerie 5213's location reminds me a lot of a nicer version of the detroit russell complex. The large building is similar to other gallery homes in berlin - a sprawling brick building hosting a range of ground floor businesses, galleries, workshops and apartments, usually the upper floors. The galleries of this nature feel somewhere in between "do-it-yourself" artist run spots to respectable, up-and-coming trend setting contemporary galleries - again it is that mix of edgy grit and smart know-how; a thing berlin does really well.

This playful, UDK graduate artist, Julien Collieux (french born, works/lives in berlin) arranged a whimsical performance using 63 "extras" as his string pulling puppets. Laid out on each chair was a diagram for when the string puller would yank their card up to expose the white wall and and help reveal the black and white defined geometric shapes.
Collieux would call out the alphabet and the gridded ink spot patterns would reveal. The exercise in itself was a site to see as some people were slow to understand the timing causing for slight delays and audience laughter to brew. Collieux would call out "let's try it one more time" and then after a few rounds the string pullers would get it right. The process became more interesting than the simple forms that appeared on the wall and an amazing analysis of human response and group teamwork. The dichotomy and need of both, simple product/complicated process, is something to be considered for some time.
Collieux is like the "mad art scientist" who uses viewers as lab rats to make his experiments come to life.

Collieux reads from the scroll of directions in the background, as his subjects pay close attention to the task at hand.

The rest of the gallery displayed other works of Collieux ranging from drawings to his performance sculpture.

These are some amazingly detailed diagrams for the ECRAN performance.


here's some more pics of the backroom space.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

deutsche guggenheim

The deutsche guggenheim might be smaller than expected (only 5500sq/ft gallery) consisting of two medium sized main rooms and a small gift shop, but the exhibitions are concise, tightly curated and a refreshingly easy to digest. The museum sits in the bottom floor of Deutsche Bank, a major arts supporter and collection company (boasts over 50,000 works in its collection). Most big-time museums go with the motto "bigger is better" but this museum extension in germany carefully considers its shows, which are more in line with a regular gallery's format of single artists and themed exhibitions, to better make use of the space.

For better pictures and info on the current show, True North, go here.


Oh, and then there's the gift shop, which you can also access online. I got this very handy, funny shopper bag for only 5 euro and have already scored compliments from some very fashionable germans! This could be my new favorite, cheap find!