Current

JUBGWGGS #2
Group show with Thomas Arnolds, Donald Baechler, André Butzer,
Milena Büsch, Hedwig Eberle, Fabian Ginsberg, Mike Kelley,
Konrad Klapheck, Jana Schröder, Dennis Tyfus, Josef Zekoff

Concert by Thomas Fehlmann June 1, 2024 / 6 pm
Exhibition April 26 – June 1, 2024

Everything written here has the potential to be just as good or as bad as anything ever written, for tangibly it — like the best thing ever written — is just language strung out on a surface. In fact, from that framework it might be said to be identical with the best thing ever written. What is here written has the potential to be just as related or unrelated to any painting or sculpture it could be paired with or applied to. In fact, the role of this text is not to sell the artworks nor even to describe them, but rather to augment one’s contextual engagement with some of them, at best.

The artworks here posses attitude. That attitude is perhaps what binds them. It is sprezzatura, swag, cool. Like a piece of writing (and perhaps all things) they might as well be about anything. What matters is how they are about whatever they are about. Or put more precisely, what matters is how what they are about exists within how they are about it. Put yet another way, the artworks here on view (or any artwork for that matter) ought to be judged not by what they are, but how what they are exists — not just for viewing — but for experience. The artwork qua object is penultimate only to the experience itself, for without the experience there is no artwork, which is not the same as saying without the artwork there is no experience. This is how attitude, sprezzatura, or swag, works.

Interrogate the substance of Fabian Ginsberg’s dissociatively regurgitated product renderings. Their tunnelling effect leads the viewer to an image that slips through one’s fingers. To speak of their impact on the viewer is to speak in circles between what they are and what they want to be.

The dense abstractions of Eberle speak most plainly to the transient and dialectical relationship between form and content. For despite historical abstraction’s puritanly modernist raison d’être, it too suffered the decay of its aura under the onslaught of cultural history. And so Eberle, like others practicing in the vast tradition of abstraction, artistically confronts meaning by way of pastiche, prevaricating her abstractions with concise figurative line work. The dance of negativity culminates in the dialectical interpretation of opposites, by which form resembles content and vice versa.

There’s a story that John Baldessari quipped that the institutionalization of his work sacrificed its humor. What was once a joke became doctrine, coldly uttered and instructed, neutered of its attitude, its humor, its swag. The world changes around objects and the objects in this way change. Life begets life. One hopes the substance of Kelley’s work survives in this context — surrounded by living art — unlike the mausoleum of the institution. Institutions preserve only flesh and bones but never spirits, which are ephemeral by their nature. Everything produced as an artwork will become lost inevitably. It might be that the more an object is artificially preserved in its physical constitution the more rapidly its attitude decays. Beauty in this sense is a slippery thing.

Grant Edward Tyler, April 2024