Gallery Quest started the year with a gallery tour around tourist trap Checkpoint Charly. Definitely one of the highlights was the cardboard control room that Belgian artist Rinus van de Velde built in König Galerie. He creates these decors in order to make an alternate reality. First, he photographs them and then he translates them into a drawing. You could say the decor represents an elaborate sketch, whereas the drawing is the end result.
In this particular setting, a control room is filled with all sorts of technical equipment. From old fashioned Macintosh computers to the newest Apple, it gives the feeling of wanting to get a grip on.. well, everything. Big brother is watching! For more impressions of this tour, check out the blog.
Hidden treasures in Kreuzberg
On February 23rd and March 2nd we discovered many art treasures in the hidden galeries of Kreuzberg. A personal favourite was the exhibition Step right up, by young American artist Andrea Crespo in galerie Kraupa-Tuskany Zeidler.
Remember the travelling circuses from the 19th and early 20 century with their so called freak shows? A thing from the past, right? Not according to Crespo. We are still watching- looking at a person as if s/he is “the other”, only now we call it Edutainment.
On the wall where hanging formations of screens, each representing another form or subject of Edutainment. Think tabloid talk shows, medical tv with live operations, shows about little people, etc. According to Crespo, this obsession with the other now moved from tv to the domain of the internet, where it flourishes in all its ugliness, bringing it closer to the original freak circus than ever before.
You can find an overview of the whole tour here.
Gallery Weekend Special – Potse
In May we did a Best-of-Gallery-Weekend-2019 Quest where we explored the art wonders in the Potsdamer Straße. A real discovery was the work by Horia Damian (1922-2012) at Galeria Plan B, one of my favourite galeries in the area.
From the seventies on, this artist from Rumania made sketches and models for monumental sculptures with metaphysical layers. Their forms where based on ancient architecture, that you can find all over the world, like the ziggurat, pyramide, tumulus and mastaba. They all represent transitional buildings, mostly burial-related. After the destruction of the Second World War, it was Europe that was in a state of transition and had to be rebuilt. In his art work, Damian proposes fascinating ways how to do this.
New galleries in City West
Last year there was a lot of movement in the Berlin gallery scene. Galleries changed locations and what caught the eye was that more than a few relocated to the western part of the city. In July we discovered what was new in the west.
Galerie Crone for example, is now located in the Fasanenstraße. AndGalerie Meyer Riegger moved from the Friedrichstraße in Kreuzberg to the west. They celebrated their move with this (sadly temporary) facade work by Daniel Knorr, called Minimal Change. Like in minimal art, he used ready made materials that can be bought in your local hardware store. This minimal change (the heating of the plates as well as the location of the work) has a maximal result.
Art Berlin Fair at Tempelhof
From 10-15 September it was Berlin Art Week and during this time Berlins most important art fair took place. Formally known as art berlin contemporary (abc), the fair had updated its profile, started a cooperation with the Kölner Messe and changed its location to the former Tempelhof airport. We visited the highlights of the fair on Sunday September 15th.
A real discovery was the work by Edi Rama at the booth of Carlier-Gebauer, artist and o yeah also the prime minister of Albania. Exactly at the moment that we where visiting the booth, there was suddenly a lot of security and there he was… the man who during dull meetings also doodles and makes sculptures!
Art Update Mitte
In October and November we were Gallery Questing in good old Mitte. Galerie Sprüth Magers showed Germany’s pride- conceptual artist Hanne Darboven (1941-2009) in the former ballroom downstairs. Her monumental work Geography I, II and III (1986) is a way to grasp the notion of time. What Darboven does in her work, is showing different constructs that show the passing of time. Like diaries, calendars and here an encyclopedia.
Normally an encyclopedia would show the common knowledge that was collected in a certain time and place. Darboven’s version was more like a private one, where the index is filled with keywords that had a personal significance to her. Check out the blog to get the full Mitte art update here
The last tour of the year was also the very first Gallery Quest in Moabit! Where Darboven created a personal way to note down time, in Kunstverein Tiergarten- Galerie Nord we saw work by Hannes Kater who created his own emoji-system as you will, his own visual language. Almost like private hieroglyphs.
The drawings are later transformed into styropor shapes, with which he builds whole installations. It allows the viewers to walk around in his drawings, literally opening up multiple points of view. The installations are not finished. During the exhibition Kater was there, two times a week, to develop them further. Here you can get an overview of what else we saw in this exciting art Kiez.