Daniel Marzona is pleased to announce the opening of the second solo exhibition of Sofia Hultén with new works.
The work of Sofia Hultén is driven by an experimental questioning of the things we encounter in everyday life. Hultén's raw objects usually come to her second-hand, sourced online or found on the street. They bear marks of a previous life, suggesting hidden potentials and parallel possibilities in their compositional re-arrangements. Her materials usually appear as fragments of a larger frame of activity, similar to a chapter in a longer storyline. Within her working process Hultén succeeds at circumventing habitual patterns of perception and revealing unascertained dimensions in everyday objects. Many of her works are brain-teasing, sometimes humorous, demonstrations of the ways in which art, often more so than philosophy or science, can mediate between abstract reasoning and aesthetic experience.
A new series of works titled Pattern Recognition focuses on the motifs of enigmas and their deciphering. Hulten places tools and industrial building materials, like spanners or metal cut-outs, on perforated panels in geometrical arrangements. The arrangements are inspired by the “Bongard Problems” of the mid-1960s, a series of puzzles originally designed to teach computers to recognise abstract concepts and assess their relevance to problem solving. In Hultén's adaption, the viewer is taking the place of the machine searching for rules governing the sequence and placement of mundane objects, while confronting fundamental problems of categorisation.
One Way or Another plays with the question of how the found state of three different objects – a stain on a hoody, a broken cup and a bent key – could have come about. Next to the objects a video presents several alternative narratives and sequences of events which may have lead to the present state of the objects. While one sequence appears logical the other, seemingly more absurd combinations of events, are presented as equally valid – a speculative fiction from a world without basic necessity.
Reality Plural similarly leaves its narrative possibilities open: a group of three drain covers with dried leaves and a layer of tar stimulates the viewer’s search for an ordering or selective principle for these objects while at the same time questioning their essence, their function and their past. As with all of Hultén's works, the main concern of Reality Plural is to offer and explore a sense of contingency. Everything could be different and as soon as our childish belief in the rule of cause and effect is suspended a whole new world opens up for us. Closely connected to the endless permutations of this world we can perceive the political dimension of Hultén's striving for openness, chance and possibility. It does away with our longing for certainty, it rejects grand narratives and a rhetoric of unambiguous identity. Instead, Hultén's work promotes a non-deterministic view of the world that is far more complex and open to imagination and by far less in danger of becoming entangled in ideologies seeking absolute truth.
Sofia Hultén (b. 1972 in Stockholm) lives and works in Berlin. Solo exhibitions include Museum Tinguely Basel (2018), Ikon Gallery Birmingham (2017), Fundacio Miro Barcelona (2015), Kunstverein Braunschweig (2013), Langen Foundation Neuss (2012), Galerie für Gegenwartskunst Bremen (2010), Kunstverein Nürnberg (2007) and Kunstverein Göttingen (2006). Hultén has taken part in numerous group exhibitions, art festivals and biennales, including Boras International Sculpture Biennal (2018), Nordic Museum Seatle (2018), Bundeskunsthalle Bonn (2018), Marta Herford (2017), Malmö Konstmuseum (2016), Kunstverein Freiburg (2016), DAAD Galerie Berlin (2015), Momentum – 8th Nordic Biennial of Contemporary Art, Moss, Norway (2015), Cesis Art Festival, Latvia (2015), Magasin 3 Stockholm Konsthall (2008/2014), Frankfurter Kunstverein (2014), Kai 10 Düsseldorf (2013), Aargauer Kunsthaus Aarau (2013), Reykjavik Arts Festival (2012), KölnSkulptur (2011), Kunsthalle Glarus (2011), Moderna Museet Stockholm (2010), Künstlerhaus Bremen (2010/2013), and Berlinische Galerie (2006).