August 21, 2014

INTERVIEW: KATHARINA FENGLER


EDDIE BERNAYS 9 Katharina Fengler, 'EDDIE BERNAYS 9', 2014, photo by Foort Fotografie / Courtesy and © the artist

What is the difference between being an artist and becoming an artist? Which way is the right one to balance success and individual artistic expression? Is there something like predestination? Berlin-based artist Katharina Fengler can openly discuss and reflect these questions. Holding a degree in Photography from Zurich University of Arts, the 1980-born artist returned to Germany's capital in order to explore different conceptual and cross-disciplinary approaches for her work. Her strikingly colourful art ranges from two dimensional paintings to side-specific installation work. Frequently displayed internationally, Katharina currently exhibits the solo show SWEETNESS at CACTUS Contemporary Art Space in Liverpool and has an upcoming show at BLOK Art Space in Istanbul together with John von Bergen. In our interview Katharina talked about her practice with air-brush and salt dough, her inspiration and why being an artist is a day-to-day decision.

August 12, 2014

INTERVIEW: JOHANNA VON MONKIEWITSCH

Johanna von Monkiewitsch / Studio visit / all works copyright and courtesy johanna von monkiewitsch
courtesy and © Johanna von Monkiewitsch

Having spent a while of her childhood in Los Angeles, Johanna von Monkiewitsch formed a strong sense for light situations and how these influence our perception, our memory and our emotion. Since her studies at the HBK in Braunschweig, where she also grew up, Johanna thus developed a unique technique of capturing and staging elusive compositions of light and shadow. While materiality is a defining aspect of her art, Johanna's works withdraw themselves from any categorisation or stylistic genre: her photographs are sculptural, her folding technique is graphical, her motif is painterly. She employs a formal language that is cleaner than clean, so that small irregularities determine the character of each work, encouraging the viewer to engage in the material's surface. Between the visual rationality and the contextual emotion incorporated in every single work, Johanna continuously challenges the notion of reality and deception. During the interview in her Cologne-based studio, which she received through a scholarship by Kölnischer Kunstverein, the 1979-born artist talked about her practice with paper and photography, her inspiration and her art's resistance to classification.

July 20, 2014

UDK RUNDGANG 2014

Mark Corfield-Moore_Klasse Neugebauer_UDK_2014 Mark Corfield-Moore (wall object) and Moritz Nehrkorn (sculpture), Klasse NeugebauerAndreas Foncerrada_Klasse Lewandowsky_UDK_2014 Andreas Foncerrada, Klasse Lewandowsky Lisa Peters_Klasse Möbus_UDK_2014 Lisa Peters, Klasse Möbus Gary Schlingheider_UDK_2014 Gary Schlingheider
all  works courtesy and © the artists // photo credit: artfridge.de

How does art reflect current politics? When are old trends replaced by new ones? What do young artists expect from the effect of their work on the spectatorship? Which art is, and which art will be interesting for the market? When hoping to find the slightest answer to any of these questions one of the best places to observe future tendencies are degree shows from art academies. The current Rundgang at UDK (Universität der Künste) in Berlin, for example, offers a pretty interesting overview on what young Berlin-based artists are interested in.

July 17, 2014

MANIFESTA 10, SAINT PETERSBURG

Thomas Hirschhorn, ABSCHLAG, 2014, Installation view, MANIFESTA 10, General Staff Building, State Hermitage Museum Klara Lidén, Warm up: State Hermitage Museum Theater , 2014 Installation view, MANIFESTA 10, General Staff Building, State Hermitage Museum Marlene Dumas The Trophy, 2013 Installation view, MANIFESTA 10, Winter Palace, State Hermitage Museum, 2014. from the top: Thomas Hirschhorn, ABSCHLAG, 2014, General Staff Building, State Hermitage Museum // Klara Lidén, Warm up: State Hermitage Museum Theater , 2014, General Staff Building, State Hermitage Museum // Marlene Dumas The Trophy, 2013, Winter Palace, State Hermitage Museum, 2014. // all installation views MANIFESTA 10,  photos by Daria Kirsanova

The latest edition of Manifesta in Saint Petersburg caused a high degree of controversy, which was escalated by the Russian authorities who have certainly excelled in black PR for the event: The anti gay propaganda laws and the unstoppable campaign for the ‘traditional Orthodox values’ that was initiated by the lawmakers in the city have set an apocalyptic backdrop for the exhibition. This, combined with stiff museum policies of the State Hermitage* and an overwhelming amount of bureaucracy, created the intrigue around the exhibition. The main question was whether the show would actually take place. Meanwhile, the International media neither seemed to care about the conceptual core of the curatorial idea or the artist list, nor about the difficulties of building a contemporary art audience in Saint Petersburg – a city that is proud of being conservatively equipped with neo-classical architecture and post-imperialist nostalgic spirit.

July 10, 2014

PIERRE HUYGHE

Pierre_Huyghe_Museum Ludwig_Courtesy Museum Ludwig and Pierre Huyghe / Copyright Pierre Huyghe Pierre_Huyghe_Museum Ludwig_Courtesy Museum Ludwig and Pierre Huyghe / Copyright Pierre Huyghe Pierre_Huyghe_Museum Ludwig_Courtesy Museum Ludwig and Pierre Huyghe / Copyright Pierre Huyghe
all images: Pierre Huyghe at Museum Ludwig in Cologne, Courtesy the artist; Marian Goodman Gallery, New York/Paris; Esther Schipper, Berlin, © Pierre Huyghe / photos by Anneli Botz // photo of the dog:
© VG Bild-Kunst Bonn, 2014 /

Walking through Pierre Huyghe’s travelling retrospective at Museum Ludwig in Cologne resembles a journey through the topographical map of his complex oeuvre, which ranges from film to photography to sculpture and from architecture to living eco systems. Before leaving the rooms of Centre Pompidou in Paris, Huyghe had the exhibition’s walls cut into pieces and brought to Cologne where they were rearranged in the space of the museum. Thus the visitors are guided through the retrospective as if they were walking into a long tube of walls, where they are bound to lurk around corners and step into artificially constructed rooms. This architectural decision suggests a sense of how the artist is dealing with space: Rather than using the given or deconstructing it completely, the 1962 born Parisian deregulates allegedly deadlocked structures in both architecture but also in his single pieces. 

June 27, 2014

INTERVIEW: ÖZGE ENGİNÖZ

Özge Enginöz / courtesy and © Özge Enginöz / featured on artfridge.de Özge Enginöz / courtesy and © Özge Enginöz / featured on artfridge
all images: Courtesy and © Özge Enginöz

Born in Balıkesir in Turkey, Özge Enginöz is a young contemporary artist who is specifically known for her mixed-media works. Her delicate choice of materials comprises and integrates toys, works on paper, old photos, video, collage, painting and drawing. Having studied at the Art and Design Faculty of Yıldız Teknik University, the Istanbul-based artist spent two years in the Istanbul Art Center recidency program and subsequently exhibited her work in several solo and group shows across Europe. Currently on display at Artnivo's first pop-up exhibition "Download" at Sofa Hotel and at the group show "Where am I?" at Kare Art Gallery, Özge Enginöz’s work is specifically present in Istanbul’s art scene. During our interview in Çukurcuma, she talked about her artistic practice, about her inspiration and about how Turkey’s current political situation influences contemporary art.

June 23, 2014

CRAFT & BLING BLING – FAKE

CRAFT & BLING BLING - FAKE / DEPOT BASEL / PHOTOS © Thomas Albrecht CRAFT & BLING BLING - FAKE / DEPOT BASEL / PHOTOS © Gregor Brändli CRAFT & BLING BLING - FAKE / DEPOT BASEL / PHOTOS © Gregor Brändli all images: Exhibition "CRAFT & BLING BLING – FAKE" at Depot Basel // detail photos by © Thomas Albrecht, installation views by © Gregor Brändli

The design exhibition CRAFT & BLING BLING – FAKE at DEPOT BASEL in Switzerland discusses a model of doubt and truth along the interpretation of fakeness. Twelve international jewellery designers created specific art and design objects that are concerned with oscillating emphasis on materiality and appearances, authorship and duplication, adaption and replica, superficiality and preciousness. Presented inside a cube of blue velvet, their works describe reversed encounters with fakeness, in which the designers play with the semiotics of fake and transform its implied crisis of originality – the effect of doubt – into an art form itself.