Artist: Banz und Bowinkel, Arno Beck, Dominik Halmer
Exhibition: 07.09. – 20.10.
Opening: 07.09., 18 Uhr
BANZ UND BOWINKEL
Palo Alto by Banz & Bowinkel is driven by the notion that the virtual world is not the realm of simulated reality, but its counterpart, in which the computer as an unconscious force subjects the meaning of our society to a new order. The artists picture the fact that we already live in a semi-virtual environment in which almost everything is precalculated and run by computers. But this computational pre-construction of reality has own laws and boundaries. The scene is constructed as a collection of symbolic entities: The terrain is the result of Boolean algebraic operations with simple geometries to create an environment which by its shape can tell the story of its computational origin. Two bugs, small and big, represent Kafka‘s Metamorphosis as well as: the computer bug. The tower represents a tremendous computer server as the control panel of societal action, similar to its visual model of inspiration, the Geneva airport tower. The artists expose the viewer to this otherness of virtual reality by constructing experiences that root in a real-life-memory but expose those to the logic of the computer.
Text by Tina Sauerländer
In his work, Arno Beck (*1984 in Bonn), joins analogue printing techniques with the esthetics of digital imaging. His typewriter drawings and woodcuts construct pictorial realms that combine motives from art history with elements from graphic programs and computer games. The digitally generated subjects are executed in a contemplative and protracted manner. The typewriter drawings are formed by layering different letters and character combinations thus creating distinct tonal values. These can vary, similar to the piano, according to the pressure on the keys. The letter scores are typed only once, leaving every drawing a unicum. By chosing a relic of text printing the artist consciously places obstacles in his creational process. The result carries a particular esthetic spanning between subjective expression and prestructured order. One might call Arno Beck’s technique a humorous attempt to re-auratize the art work in times of image inflation. Aware of the
present mass production und diffusion of digital images he turns the principle of re-production upside down and questions it at the same time.
Text by Falko Alexander
Dominik Halmer’s practice centers on the question of how our individual image of “reality” is constructed. Coming from an analytical yet sensual approach to painting, Halmer works with the collision of different realities. In his so-called “semi-functional image-objects,” we find canvases combined with everyday objects. Based on formal analogies, Halmer creates a subtle coherence between painting and objects and transforms their specific function into a poetic state of being. Halmer uses experimental arrangements to explore the relationship between object and depiction, functionality and art. By confronting the traditional concept of painting with pragmatic values and suggesting a playful usage of the artwork, he also undermines ideas of the untouchable exclusivity of art.
"Semi-Athletics" is the title of a series of works integrating equipment from sports. These items, which are already part of a complex set of imagery and values, address the observer in an immediate way by inviting a reflexive mental reaction. By opening an associative space, on a more abstract level, they play with predominant ideas of accomplishment and systems of evaluation within our society.
Press release (2017)
ALJIRA, Center for Contemporary Art