Labyr 1 with Kathryn Andrews, Thomas Houseago, Franz Ackermann, Erika Hock, Jenny Holzer, Cerith Wyn Evans, Manuel Graf and Alexander Ernst Voigt
28.06.14 – 31.01.15
For the exhibition “LABYR 1”, BNKR invited Gregor Jansen, Director of the Kunsthalle Düsseldorf; he in turn invited eight artists to show their work over 200 square meters of exhibition space.
The term ‘labyr’ was developed by artists and architects in the 1960s as a connection between ‘laboratory’ and ‘labyrinth’, addressing tropes of theory and practice from art, architecture, city planning, urbanism, experimentation, and thinking around utopia. In this sense, “LABYR 1” emerged as an entity and a space, while also meant to serve in offering areas for action – with and beyond art, architecture, history, and utopias departing from a permanently phantasmagoric, yet real image space.
Jansen’s refined sensibility for talents in the global art world is demonstrated here in his selection of artists. For instance, Museum Ludwig in Cologne recently exhibited Kathryn Andrew’s disturbingly beautiful installations situated between pop art and conceptual art on the subject of the everyday. Here, she has created a wall object that is oriented around the illusions of the American dream factory of Hollywood. For a while now, Thomas Houseago (1972) has been attracting the attention of the international art world with his mask-like sculptures. He demonstrates a contemporary engagement with sculptural figuration in the tradition of nearly forgotten classics. Franz Ackermann (1963) creates “Mental Maps” representing global spaces that determine our thinking between the search for home, business travel and being a tourist. Departing from of the pavilion as an embodiment of sculpture, Erika Hock (1981) has developed a temporary outdoor projection space, presented here as a model. Jenny Holzer (1950) and Cerith Wyn Evans (1958) both work with light and text as carriers of information. In their work, they address fundamental questions and problems of communication and cognition, derived from the urban and living space of the contemporary individual. In his work, Manuel Graf (1978) examines intercultural architectural references between the East and the West. His video “Let Music Play”, for example, interrogates the room configurations of mosques. With his paintings, Alexander Ernst Voigt (1981) creates anti-urbanistic, seemingly lost natural environments to be re-discovered.