image ©: Playtime 1967, Jacques Tati. www.tativille.com
curator Raimar Stange
Oystein Aasan, Isabelle Cornaro, Sylvia Henrich, Olivier Millagou, Ivan Moudov, Riccardo Previdi, Christine Würmell, Franz Ackermann, Pierre Bismuth, Michel Majerus, Olaf Nicolai, Manfred Pernice, Martha Rosler, Daniel Buren, Lawrence Weiner
17 February - 1 April 2006
opening Thursday 16 February 6 - 9 pm
Erna Hécey Gallery is pleased to present the exhibition Location Shots curated by German critic and independent curator Raimar Stange.
In Location Shots the broad thematic of "urbanism, nature, landscape" is subject to artistic reflection. Questions regarding the artificiality of nature, the construction of landscapes, and the power structures that regulate urban life are taken up and treated by a group of artists from three different generations. The work of seven young artists—Øystein Aasan, Isabelle Cornaro, Sylvia Henrich, Olivier Millagou, Ivan Moudov, Riccardo Previdi, and Christine Würmell —is "cross-read" by works of artists from a middle and older generation: Franz Ackermann, Michel Majerus, Olaf Nicolai, Pierre Bismuth, and Manfred Pernice, with works of Martha Rosler, Daniel Buren, and Lawrence Wiener pars pro toto under consideration.
This aesthetic constellation demonstrates how the venerable question of landscape as a constructed phenomenon—what Karl Marx already referred to as "second nature"—is, in our times of increasing environmental destruction, thematized anew with an explicitly political orientation. Today the problem of constructed nature penetrates into evermore domains of life, such as leisure time and tourism, along with youth culture and social organization in general. Civilization destroys nature, which then in turn attempts to emulate the very nature that has been displaced.
The artists presented here all work in the post-Pop neo-conceptual tradition, which generally speaking privileges critical reflection and experimentation over aesthetic pleasure. This accounts for the wide range of media in the show, including drawing, photography, text, installation, sound, light, and print. The artists' differing approaches to city life highlight a number of common themes, from the problem of "who owns the city" and the resignification and remapping of urban geographies by graffiti artists and skateboarders, to the confusion of natural and artifical spaces and questions concerning the city's representation. In addressing these themes, Location Shots shows how contemporary art engages with and builds upon the reflections on urbanism made by prior artworks.