Sunday, 10 May 2009
The work of an artist usually ends a couple of days prior to the opening of the exhibition. Temporary City is different. Since there is no curator and no fixed theme involved, the artists do not only decide, at the spot, what will become art – they also give this art a specific place inside of the exhibition space at Atelierhof in Berlin.
Since yesterday, fifteen artists are present here, and they will not leave before the opening of the exhibition on Friday.
Their double task – making and taking – arouses questions that make us think differently on what art is all about. When fifteen artists decide to make an exhibition together, ‘democratic’, as a group of young befriended individuals, can this result even be called an exhibition – or rather one new big giant work of art? Does the absence of a theme – or more generally put: the absence of something that links the artists and their works together other than simple coincidence – not necessarily imposes present latent themes: the ‘problem’ of Berlin, the use of the architectural exhibition structure, the battle of different media and approaches, the temporality of all art? How will this ‘process’ of making an exhibition be visible inside of the exhibition space – and how will the new, rather explicit, and specially designed exhibition structure survive? What has become of the romantic loneliness of the artistic project, when to make this adventure succeed, talk and compromise is necessary, and no artist can be alone for longer than five minutes? And finally: what will be handed over to the public: an exhibition that can only speak about the way it has been made – and that by doing so, must keep silent about everything that art has up to now spoken about? Or an exhibition that is nor an exhibition nor a work of art, but something irreprehensible, unfinished, unmastered and confusing?
Whatever will happen in the next couple of days – these questions will constantly snap, break and present themselves. Like twigs during a walk in the forest, compared by Walter Benjamin to a walk in the city: not to find one’s way between the trees is not the purpose; one must loose oneself in it. (cvg)