Nine Berlin-based artists and architects have been invited by Jochum Rodgers to present contemporary statements in an autumn group show. Berta Fischer, Barkow Leibinger, Thilo Heinzmann, Thomas Kröger, Angela Mewes, Sven Temper, Clemens Tissi, Tina Roeder and Suse Weber – a group of friends among themselves, their practices are grounded in the fine arts, performance, architecture and sculpture, while their respective work is located between the disciplines. Their tendency towards design stems from different interests: experimentation with materials, boredom with the norm, questions of compositions or the joy of provocation. All works in the exhibition are either unique items or editions.
How does today’s art alter reality? How do aesthetic production and political, social space interact with each other? The profound changes in artistic practice as a result of new media, in particular digitalisation, have resulted in a stream of new strategies tackling how to construct or deconstruct reality in and with art. The exhibition Vertigo of Reality – featuring works by Trevor Paglen, Harun Farocki, Julian Oliver, Bruce Nauman, Dan Graham, Marina Abramovi?, Hamish Fulton, Bjørn Melhus, Christian Falsnaes and Tino Sehgal a.o. – seeks answers to the question of the beholder’s repositioning between artwork and reality, highlights key concepts such as participation and interactivity, and fathoms changes to our self-determination which affect all areas of modern life. The Metabolic Office for the Repair of Reality, building on Joseph Beuys’ concepts of ‘social sculpture’, serves within the exhibition as a permanent opportunity for escapade, dialogue and contradiction with over 40 events, performances, conferences and workshops.
The original idea behind the Bauhaus, founded in Weimar in 1919, was not white boxes and tubular furniture, but collaboration: the collaboration of genres and disciplines as well as the interchange of arts, crafts and industries. Digital Bauhaus 2014 takes this idea into the 21st century and explores the formats and frameworks of creative group work, both online and on-site, that shape successful project organization. In the frame of an extensive program of hands-on workshops, keynote talks, panels and spaces for exchange, professional experts on collaboration invited to the summit will share lessons they’ve picked up, and delve into modes and models of working together both old and new.
Moscow is one of the most relevant settings for discussions of urban development today. Recent changes in the city’s infrastructure, as well as new attitudes towards the planning of public spaces, have made Moscow an intriguing destination for architects and urban designers. Following 14th International Architecture Exhibition’s theme ‘Fundamentals’, the exhibition MOSKVA: urban space highlights elementary shifts in architecture throughout Moscow’s past, revealing new urban possibilities on the basis of the winning project for the creation of Zaryadye Park by Diller Scofidio + Renfro. Covering approximately 700 square meters MOSKVA: urban space will take place in the exhibition spaces of the Biennale as well as the inner courtyards of Santa Maria della Pietá. An accompanying conference, ‘Between Architecture. Public Space and the Urban Commons’, will debate how society and governance renegotiate the demands and expectations concerning the role of urban public space in modern societies.
Vor Ort (On site) has invited eight international artists to present their works in the public spaces of Sennestadt, a district of Bielefeld. Under the artistic direction of Thomas Thiel, director of the Bielefelder Kunstverein, the new commissions look to connect real, social and medial spaces, focusing on the specific history of the landscape as well as the current situation in Sennestadt. The architectural – and, in urban design – significant district, together with its inhabitants, become the subject-matter. In the 1950s and 60s, the major residential development of Sennestadt excited interest both nationally and internationally as an ‘Experiment amid Green Fields’. The ideas of its architect, Prof. Dr.-Ing. Hans-Bernhard Reichow (1899-1974), and his designs were based on what he advocated as an ‘organic urban architecture’, which strove for a spacious city suffused with greenery, offering living conditions as he believed they should be. It revolved around a synthesis of landscape, architecture and art, in the sense of an expansive culture of living. This original concept and its further development under the motto, ‘Reichow for the 21st century’ has played an important role in the context of the Sennestadt remodelling project since 2008. In this public space, the sculptures and the contributions of the Vor Ort exhibition will signal a provisional status-quo in the course of the remodelling.
Established with design in Berlin since 1981, the exhibition Italian Eclectic marks the inaugural show of Hans-Peter Jochums new space on Mommsenstrasse, which is from now on operating under the new name JochumRodgers. Particularly interested in its mentality and playful spirit, Hans-Peter Jochum and Jett Rodgers’ works draw heavily on Italian design: exploring the development of design as an end in itself rather than a way to produce objects of utility.
As a result, Italian Eclectic spans from Carlo Bugatti’s Art Nouveau furniture to the bold postmodern pieces of the Memphis Group and Ettore Sottsass, and provides an assemblage of unique objects and small editions designed by different artists: a mirror object by Gino Marotta, a black cabinet by the sculptor Giacomo Cometti, a chair by the painter and sculptor Thayaht, and the TOP mirror chair by the architect and artist Nanda Vigo.
In the frame of the young curators’ program Jeunes Commissaires and in cooperation with the Deutsches Architektur Zentrum DAZ, the Bureau des arts plastiques / Institut français has developed the project In Extenso – Erweitert, posing the question ‘How to rethink space and matter?’ On this occasion, the French curators Agnès Violeau, Karima Boudou, Céline Poulin and Florence Ostende have been invited to delve into the themes of Performance, Social Context, Public Space and Storytelling in an experimental process based on a series of public discussions and workshops: an open and ongoing exchange between them, and with the invited artists, architects, thinkers from France and Germany shall be initiated. This will offer the curators the possibility of a context-shifting, extended interaction, oscillating between architecture and visual arts, performative and narrative expression, physical and social space. The outcome of In Extenso – Erweitert will be presented in a second phase of the project at the DAZ from September 2015 onwards. The evolution of the project and the research process will be documented and made available on www.jeunescommissaires.de.
In her exhibition Homage, Jill Magid considers the eschewal of intellectual property rights in favour of sharing. This concept is explored through the mutually respectful relationship between the Bauhaus modernist Joseph Albers and Mexico’s modernist architect Luis Barragán. Aided by the precise notes Albers left on the back of his paintings which tell of the colours, brands and condition of each of the paints he used, Magid makes her own ‘Homages’, forging Albers’ works according to his own instructions. Complementing these paintings, a series of ‘Butaque’ chairs will be on view, which Magid has made through a process of further replication, involving the work of Mexican-based designer Clara Porset. She worked with Barragán, and was friends with Albers, allowing the latter to trace the dimensions of her chair and reproduce it for every room in Black Mountain College — a version that is attributed to Albers. Furthering the logic of this appropriation, Magid presents her own Butaque chair, made by tracing the contours Albers’ own traced version. Homage is Jill Magid’s first solo exhibition with the Zurich based gallery RaebervonStenglin.
The exhibition Collection Röthlisberger | Miroirs – Spiegel at Kunsthalle Fribourg marks the largest presentation dedicated to designers and architects, Trix and Robert Haussmann, in over a decade. Since 1967, the couple has built an idiosyncratic oeuvre that has continuously challenged architectural, design and aesthetic conventions, and has explored many creative perspectives, such as poetry composed by chance, drawings, collages and texts. The exhibition, composed entirely in collaboration with Trix and Robert Haussmann, examines every aspect of their research, and weaves together different bodies of work, including furniture objects belonging to the Röthlisberger Collection, as well as a series of unique mirror’s made in the 1980’s. In addition, they have conceptualized, designed and produced about 10 new mirror works from 2014 that will be installed in the space of the Kunsthalle to create different optical illusions.
How does a digitally oriented generation, for whom creativity, sustainability, and mobility are more important than status, live? This is the question explored in Freunde von Freunden’s and Vitra’s first apartment in Berlin. Building upon their common styles and experiences, the FvF Apartment by Vitra on Mulackstrasse offers a glimpse into the world of the Swiss furniture manufacturer’s collage and visualizes the interview magazine’s conceptualization of urban living. The 65sqm ‘Altbau’ apartment has been rebuilt and designed to be adaptable to the diverse scenarios of everyday life.