elements

Lukas Hoffmann, Andrea Zabric

26.11.2018 – 18.01.2019

 

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Vernissage: Freitag 16. November, 18 – 21 Uhr,
16 November 2018 – 18 Januar 2019
Bitte nach Vereinbarung unter contact@gig-munich.com
Finissage: Freitag 18. Januar 2019, 19 – 21 Uhr

 

The exhibition elements, showcasing new work by Lukas Hoffmann and Andrea Zabric is GiG Munich’s first collaboration with Klasse Pia Fries, Akademie der Bildenden Künste München.

What connects the two young, upcoming artists is a shared interest in materialism, where their version of materialism belongs more to the philosophical developments centred around Speculative Realism than to the handmade, expressive variety traditionally associated with the activity of painting. Operating at the intersection of materialism and realism, they submit to the view that the primacy afforded to matter necessarily demotes the importance of the human understanding of it. If matter is all there is, then its reality must be encountered for itself. In their quasi-scientific, quasi-magical approaches, they reject the emphasis on the multiplicity of interpretations that art borrowed from dominant modes of contemporary critical theory (post-structuralism, deconstruction, psychoanalysis) in order to pursue an almost essential, almost dogmatic, grounding of reality. With this comes a violence, whether this is manifested in the high pressure Zabric submits her pigments to, or the highly polished weapon-like quality of Hoffmann’s metal work. They show that the material world, the inhuman one, is intense, forceful, elemental.

 

Magdalena Wisniowska 2018

 

Susanne Wagner

Angelina

29.03 – 11.05.2018

Angelina 1-2

Susanne Wagner, Angelina, 2018, installation view. Photo courtesy Susanne Wagner.

 

Angelina 2

Susanne Wagner, Angelina, 2018, 77 x 40 x 40 cm, painted ceramic. Photo courtesy Susanne Wagner.

 

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Susanne Wagner, Angelina, 2018, 77 x 40 x 40 cm, painted ceramic. Photo courtesy Susanne Wagner.

 

Angelina 4

Susanne Wagner, Angelina, 2018, 77 x 40 x 40 cm, painted ceramic. Photo courtesy Susanne Wagner.

 

Angelina 5

Susanne Wagner, Angelina, 2018, 77 x 40 x 40 cm, painted ceramic. Photo courtesy Susanne Wagner.

 

GiG Munich is excited to present Angelina, the solo exhibition by German video artist and sculptor, Susanne Wagner.

For the exhibition Wagner has produced a new body of work, a large-scale, site-specific floor installation consisting of seventy seven almost identical square ceramic tiles, each 40 x 40 cm individual tile topped by a slightly large than life dome of the female breast. These tiles are arranged in the exact centre of the room in a diagonal grid-like fashion, four or five tiles across, seventeen tiles deep. They are also painted to emphasise this diagonal pattern, again with each tile divided into quarters, or four squares, all in bright, non-primary colours. To stand at the doorway and to look down at the work is to see a pleasing check-board pattern of squares and undulating lines, salmon pinks, lemon yellows and different shades of brown moving across the room.

The arrangement recalls postmodern critiques of originality, best articulated by Rosalind Krauss in her 1986 essay, ‘Originality of the Avant-garde.’ As she argued, any work that makes use of the grid, cannot lay claim to originality, because the grid is a visual device that can only bear repeating. The same way there is no original and unique grid, there is no unique and original art object. Instead, Krauss rewrites the art object as text, whose meaning is determined by the relation it has with other texts. As a text the work of art has no point of origin and no essence; it is only something that can be endlessly reconfigured. In the case of Wagner’s floor piece, even though each tile is handmade and therefore has unique quality, none can claim to be the one original tile, more meaningful than the other.

But what makes Wagner’s work so exciting is that this repetition pertaining to postmodernism’s discussions of originality is complicated by another kind of repetition arising from a very different kind of discourse. For readers of Judith Butler, it has a performative aspect that addresses the ways in which the categories of gender are constructed in a heterosexual normative society. In this way, it is also very timely, considering that in our current era of ♯MeToo activism, many of the norms consolidating sexual and gender hierarchy are being questioned.  It comes down to Wagner’s use of the breast. The female breast is a primary sexual characteristic but it also functions as a signifier of gender. Real women have breasts – and much of the uproar surrounding Angelina Jolie’s mastectomy had to do with our identification of her as the well-endowed Laura Croft, video game sex symbol supreme.  By isolating, enlarging and repeating the form of the female breast Wagner demonstrates that gender is not a given fact. It is neither an expression of some internal essence, nor is it an objective ideal to which we may aspire to. Gender is something we perform, meaning it is brought about through certain acts on our part. And these are repetitive and often mundane, so much so, that they give gender the illusion of a stable identity. The gender identity we take for granted – with all the notions of ‘real womanhood’ that this assumes – are revealed to be nothing more than a re-enactment of a set of meanings already socially and culturally established.

What this means in turn is that the same acts, which give the illusion of stable identity are also the ones that reveal it to be illusory at the moment repetition fails.  Wagner’s work alerts us to the fact that the same process of repetition, which constructs the gender categories binding us, could also be the key to their undoing.

Magdalena Wisniowska 2018

Susanne Wagner

Angelina

 

 

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Eröffnung: Mittwoch 28. März, 18- 21 Uhr

Ausstellungsdauer: 29. März – 11. Mai 2018

Öffnungszeiten: Montag – Donnerstag, 15 – 18 Uhr

Bitte nach Vereinbarung unter contact@gig-munich.com

 


 

GiG Munich is excited to present the new, site-specific floor installation “Angelina” by German artist, Susanne Wagner.

 

Best known for her video work, Wagner’s current practice has shifted towards sculpture and now involves the use of ceramics in the production of large-scale modular pieces, often juxtaposed with representations of the female body.  While the new work addresses themes of repetition and originality, it also complicates the postmodernist narrative by showing how repetition participates in the cultural construction of sex, gender and the body as ‘original’ because ‘natural’ foundations of identity.

 

With their upward facing breasts, the repeated floor elements of “Angelina” aim (quite literally) to bring to relief the power structures responsible for our assumptions about gender, in an up-to-date tabloid context of Angelina Jolie’s mastectomy, Emma Watson’s feminism-lite and ♯MeToo Twitter activism.

Lou Jaworski

 “Nothing” work list

 

fullsizeoutput_1c5cLou Jaworski, Hyper Figure standing, 2017, ferrite magnet, dimensions variable

 

fullsizeoutput_1c5dLou Jaworski, Hyper Figure lying, 2017, ferrite magnet, dimensions variable

 

fullsizeoutput_1c5eLou Jaworski, Untitled, 2017, iron meteorite, brass pencil. 14 x 0,8 x 0,8 cm

 

fullsizeoutput_1c5fLou Jaworski, Untitled, 2017, iron meteorite, brass pencil. 14 x 0,8 x 0,8 cm (detail)

 

fullsizeoutput_1c60Lou Jaworski, Untitled, 2017, sewing needle, gold 7 cm

 

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Lou Jaworski, Presence (silent version) 2017, vinyl 12 inch, edition of 2+1 AP

 

All images courtesy of the artist.

Tim Bennett

Beletage – 15th September – 27th October

 

Beletageinstalltionview1Tim Bennett, Beletage, installation view. Photo: Johannes Wende

 

Beletageinstallation3Tim Bennett, Beletage, installation view. Photo: Johannes Wende

 

StillStandingTim Bennett, Still Standing, 2017,185 x 55 x 55 cm, plaster, steel and lacquer. Photo: Johannes Wende

 

VielGeldTim Bennett, Untitled (Viel Geld und kleines Glied, kauf er sich doch ‘ne Glockenbachsuite), 2017, 246 x 246 x 80cm, plasterboard, plaster, wooden frame and steel. Photo: Johannes Wende

Tim Bennett

Beletage – images and text 15th September – 27th October

 

fullsizeoutput_1c51Tim Bennett, Beletage, installation view.

 

fullsizeoutput_1c52Tim Bennett, Beletage, installation view.

 

fullsizeoutput_1c40Tim Bennett, Still Standing, 2017,185 x 55 x 55 cm, plaster, steel and lacquer.

 

fullsizeoutput_1c43Tim Bennett, Untitled (Viel Geld und kleines Glied, kauf er sich doch ne’ Glockenbachsuite), 2017, 246 x 246 x 80 cm, plaster, plasterboard, wooden frame and  steel.

 

fullsizeoutput_1c49Tim Bennett, Untitled (Wir wollen euch nicht ihr huhren Kinder), 2017, 50 x 50 cm, plaster, plasterboard, wooden frame.

 

For his solo exhibition at GiG Munich, Tim Bennett (b. 1973, Rochdale) has created a new body of work, consisting of one large freestanding panel, Untitled (Viel Geld und kleines Glied, kauf’ er sich doch ne Glockenbachsuite), one small type painting, Untitled (Wir wollen euch nicht ihr huhren kinder) and one column-like structure resting on tangled steel, Standing Still. The starting point for the work was the process of gentrification, especially visible in the surrounding Glockenbach area. The plasterboard panels incorporate graffiti slogans, including one seen recently on the side of the newly built Glockenbachsuiten; Standing Still resembles a re-enforced concrete column, as found on a building site, toppled over during a rampage.

Despite its political aspects, the work is not intended to be a critique of the capitalist system of which gentrification is only a symptom. It is neither the kind of critical political art found many cultural institutions, nor a provocative gesture along the lines of urban artists such as Banksy. Instead, by acknowledging the all-subsuming nature of capitalism, Tim Bennett works from within. He takes a graffiti slogan and quite literally, by carefully remaking it in plaster, gentrifies it.

His work engages with the structure of disavowal characteristic of corporate anti-capitalism. Such is the time in which we live that most if not all anti-capitalist gestures have been incorporated within the capitalist system, alternative cultures given space in the mainstream. Graffiti slogans are a particularly ineffectual kind of protest, precisely because they offer us the space for rebelliousness – who doesn’t find these slogans a little bit funny? – while leaving us free to participate in capital exchange without guilt or shame. Their kind of protest leaves our status as consumers intact.

By incorporating corporate anti-capitalism structure of disavowal within his work, Tim Bennett’s Beletage demonstrates how we are participants in the process of gentrification we allegedly deplore. He does so however, with humour and good grace.

Tim Bennett

“Beletage”: Press release

 

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Vernissage: Freitag, 15. September, 18 Uhr – 21 Uhr
Einführung: Dr. Magdalena Wisniowska
Ausstellungsdauer: 16. September – 27. Oktober 2017
Geöffnet: Montag – Donnerstag, 15-18 Uhr,
bitte nach Vereinbarung unter 01795662699 und gigmunich@gmail.com

 

Beletage, Tim Bennett’s first show for GiG Munich takes gentrification as a theme. Taking the anger evident in the scribbles and defacement of gentrified property as his starting point, he incorporates these acts of destruction into his formal sculpture. “Yuppies verpisst euch” can be glimpsed in the large, freestanding picture made of plasterboard; a broken reinforced column stands precariously in front of it, as if left behind after some kind of rampage.

The work dissects the mechanisms of protest, to demonstrate the extent of our complicity in the workings of capital. It acknowledges our current inability to offer any viable political-economic alternative to the capitalist system.

 

Tim Bennetts erste Ausstellung für die GiG Munich – „Beletage“ – setzt sich mit dem Thema Gentrifizierung auseinander. Indem er die Wut, die sich in den Schmierereien und Verunstaltungen von gentrifiziertem Eigentum als Ausgangspunkt seines Werks nimmt, integriert er diese Akte der Zerstörung in seine formellen Skulpturen. „Yuppies verpisst euch“ kann man in dem großen, freistehenden Bild aus Gips lesen; eine gebrochene, verstärkte Säule steht gefährlich nah davor als ob sie so nach einer Randale einfach zurückgelassen worden wäre.

Die Arbeit analysiert den Mechanismus des Protests, um unser Ausmaß an Komplizenschaft bezüglich der Funktionsweise des Kapitals deutlich zu machen. Es bestätigt unsere aktuelle Unfähigkeit irgendeine realistische politisch-wirtschaftliche Alternative zum kapitalistischen System zu finden.

trans. Nadja Gebhardt

 

EASY images and text

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The exhibition was not meant to be called “EASY.” As is often the way, it started with the opposite idea. At the time I was reading Deleuze’s late essay on Beckett, “The Exhausted,” and wanted to do a show, which would make use of its definition of the image. “It is extremely difficult to make a pure and unsullied image, one that is nothing but an image,” writes Deleuze and seeing the late Beckett plays I could believe this was the case. “Of course it is not easy to make an image…”

As all four artists – Jonah Gebka, Hannes Heinrich, Steffen Kern and Janka Zöller – work with images, Deleuze’s definition seemed appropriate. Things changed after I visited them in their studio. We were talking about the possibilities available to contemporary painting and I gave the example of Gerhard Richter – how at the time, to do both, abstraction and figuration, was a challenge that filled him with anxiety. To which Janka replied, “What, only two? Bah!”

Painting now is not difficult in the same way it was 40, 30 or even 10 years ago. Opening up to new possibilities, expanding some pre-conceived notion of what painting might be, what it might do in a contemporary critical context no longer holds the same kind of urgency. And if not, if painting is no longer defined by that kind of hardship and struggle, it would seem painting must be easy instead.

In various ways, Jonah Gebka, Hannes Heinrich, Steffen Kern and Janka Zöller acknowledge this lack of anxiety in their work. For them the fact that painting might seem easy is a strategy, offering a means with which they can engage with the viewer.

Jonah’s work is about surface. Through a variety of means (digital manipulation, engagement with printing processes, the use of mixed media) he makes the surface of the image, specifically its physical aspect, apparent to the viewer. For GiG, he shows a watercolour on paper, stretched around its wooden frame. The image is of a generic blue and white checked deck chair, like those found around pools in holiday resorts around the world. Yet the image is not found, but carefully constructed by the artist.

Janka’s interest lies in contemporary cultures, both high and low, traditional and post-digital. For her current project – and she has many – Janka combines lyrical, Matisse-like abstractions with paintings of eyes taken from her Instagram selfies. Always starting from scratch, always on the move, she paints with restless energy, quickly and directly. The two components of her work, abstraction and figuration, sit next to each other without speaking, never coming together to form a coherent whole.

Hannes works with painting’s capacity for illusion. At its most basic, a grey patch can be a shadow; a few crisscrossing lines make it clear that one lies on top of the other. Is it surprising how little it takes to produce the impression of an endless sunset? He paints wooden frames around his paintings and uses paintings of wood to make sculptures. But unlike the mythical Parrhasius he never tries to trick the viewer into believing that what he sees, might be real. For Hannes, illusion is something very obvious and in its obviousness, intimidating.

Steffen likes to transform one visual register into another, often changing the original narrative along the way. For his drawing “O.T.” he takes a performance by Ana Mendieta and describes it in a few lines of text, referring to the filmed nature of the piece through the introduction of VHS type glitches. In “Props” he takes some tools he found abandoned in an attic and covers them in black paint. They now exist in a no-man’s land, never quite achieving their fictional potential because never quite losing their status as useful objects.

Magdalena Wisniowska, 2017