Margaret Thatcher Projects is pleased to present minimal invasiv, the fifth solo-exhibition of hand-carved marble sculptures by artists Venske & Spänle. Taking visual and conceptual inspiration from the realms of sci-fi, cartoon animation and an innate sense of playful humor, this Munich-based duo is deeply interested in the interaction between sculpture, place, and viewer.
Regarding these biomorphic sculptures as alien-like entities taken from their original place of creation to travel the world through a myriad of different exhibitions, the sculptures have now landed in New York to “invade” the scene like otherworldly creatures, spreading their species under the radar. The artists further push this notion by documenting their sculptures interacting in site-specific locations. Often times, their works assert their presence in spaces that may otherwise be overlooked, such as Helotroph Foum Squitt where the sculpture finds a temporary home in the middle of a rock desert in Morocco. Chapeau Malienne rests on an African boy’s head, becoming a regal crown for a local village man.
Perhaps the most “invasive” piece in the exhibition is L’Osservatore/The Observer. This piece houses a security camera as its eye, silently observing and recording all activities around it. Questions of where this entity came from and what its intent is immediately arise. Curiosity lures the viewer to interact with this strange thing, resulting in a cross examination of what each is seeing, doing, and thinking. The unassuming nature of this cast of characters raises questions: have they quickly assimilated on the planet, or always belonged just where they stand?
Venske & Spänle is the moniker for the artists Julia Venske (b.1971, Berlin) and Gregor Spänle (b. 1969, Munich). The artists live and work in Munich, and have exhibited their work worldwide in North and South America, Europe, Asia, Australia, and Africa. Recent solo museum exhibitions include the Museum de Bella Artes, Valencia, ES (2014) and Museum Bad Arolsen, Kassel, DE (2012). Permanent public installations of their work include Myzot Nachtwächter in Incheon, South Korea and Autoeater in Querceta, Italy. Autoeater is currently on display in Atlanta, GA for a three-year term for Atlanta’s Midtown Alliance Public Art Program.