15 May 2015


© Julian Stalbohm_INT-PIC-FJD-2
Julian Stalbohm, FICTION JEST DEBACLE, 10.04-23.05.2015 at Ginerva Gambino, Cologne © Julian Stalbohm, courtesy Ginerva Gambino, Cologne

Two weeks ago, news about the second royal hit all the headlines in England and put an end to the country's buzzing speculations about its name, its hair colour or the length of Kate's stay in the hospital. These so-called "Novelty Bets" – referring to a gambling system that allows betting on practically everything imaginable in the near or far future – are the central tool in the current show of conceptual artist Julian Stalbohm: Placed and documented throughout the last year, he approaches the subject of speculation and chance by juxtaposing magnified prints of betting slips that reveal both a handwritten bet and the respective, often absurd, odds. While all slips are presented on a grid behind the obscured window of Ginerva Gambino gallery, the artist built a small stage inside the space and placed three dough-based figures on the ground. Both the dough objects and the betting slips share one characteristic: their outcome is unpredictable.

Julian's show "Fiction Jest Debacle" negotiates the social process of constructing of truth – it speaks of the wish to participate in the fate of life and of chances. I spoke with the 1980-born artist, who studied in Malmö and now lives both in Sweden and in Berlin, about gambling, numbers of sex hotlines, false promises, and the persistent wish to be in control of things – to be a stockholder of the future.

4 May 2015


10_04_15 VE CampoSStefano_MicheleByRosa simone_settimo
Portrait of Michele Drascek, photo by Rosa Lux; Construction site, installing UTTER at Arsenale- la Biennale di Venezia, photo by JAŠA 

The subject of the upcoming exhibition at the Slovenian Pavillion for Venice Biennale is bombastic: Hope, and its creation through the power of cooperation is what the Slovenian performance artist JAŠA, the Italian curator Michele Drascek and a large group of other collaborators are aiming to achieve with their exhibition. Staged in a two floored architectural wooden construction, their joint project "UTTER. The violent necessity for the embodied presence of hope" is a durational performance that will proceed from the 9th of May until the 22nd of November 2015. Involving music, visual and performance-based elements, the choreography of the project will be repeated 28 times within a strict weekly plan – something that they call 'a structured act of discipline'. And although each participant produces a creative output, the project centres entirely on the communication with the public and the spectators. I spoke to Michele Drascek about the ambitious project, about his personal motivation and his hopes.