|art.fair 2006 – a kaleidoscope of 21st-century contemporary art (15.9.2006)|
|The young art fair enriches the palette of the Cologne art scene in autumn|
This November, the EXPO XXI grounds in Cologne will once again be transformed into the stage for the international art scene. From the 2nd to the 5th of November 2006, 72 galleries and over 300 artists born since 1960 will present works of the 21st century at the art fair. Visitors will again be offered a young, contemporary and international program of art. The gallery program will be enhanced by two special exhibitions, from art.award partners and the International Photography Award. The whole event will be rounded off with a varied supporting program of light and sound art, live music, performances and parties.
art.fair was able to meet the increased demand from gallery owners by the move to EXPO XXI last year. The art.fair will expand again this year. Prompted not only by over 200 applications for this year’s art.fair from galleries but also by the sharply increasing visitor numbers, the organizers have expanded the event by including two additional halls. The two halls, both of 800m2, will be used as a further exhibition area and a lounge.
The art.fair offers visitors a multi-facetted international art program made up of paintings, sculpture, photography and installation covering the entire EXPO XXI exhibition site from 2.11 to 5.11 2006. Around 40% of this year’s 72 exhibitors are from abroad. In addition, many promising items are represented this year. An increase in value in the coming years is not ruled out; works from, for example, Salustiano, Jörg Eibelshäuser, Clemens Krauss, Oleg Kulik, Richard Stipl, Leopold Rabus or Cameron Rudd have already proved this.
This year, too, many promising talents are exhibiting. The Canadian TrépanierBaer gallery from Calgary is exhibiting two of the leading artists of Canada, Evan Penny and Liz Magor. Both base their work on sculpture and question the perception of the observer based on the real appearance.
Evan Penny, South African by birth and now living and working in Toronto, is regarded as one of the leading artists of contemporary sculpture. His works are exhibited in Canada, the USA and Europe in private and public collections. Most recently, he could be seen in the Expanded Eye exhibition in Zurich’s Kunsthaus gallery. Penny’s mimetically prepared sculptures depict the backs of heads, larger-than-life frontal busts or distorted faces. He creates sculptures with individual physiognomies and thereby suggests the reality of non-existent people.
Liz Magor, born in 1948, lives and works in Vancouver and has won several international prizes. With a certain irony she grapples with familiar everyday objects, investigates their appearance and reality and instils in them up a social importance.
The Christopher Cutts Gallery from Toronto exhibits the latest works of Richard Stipl. The artist, born in Czechoslovakia in 1968 and now living in Toronto, is already known in Canada, USA and Europe thanks to his participation in numerous exhibitions and fairs. Stipl, who originally came from painting, now creates human sculptures on a scale of 1:4. Using himself as a model for his studies, in the past year he has grappled with individual life phases.
The photography and sculptures of the Russian Andrei Molodkin, presented by the young and successful Kashya Hildebrand gallery, which has establishments in Switzerland and the USA, are highly topical and politically explosive. He fills acrylic cubes with crude oil from the pipelines of the Czech Republic, Iraq and Iran, this fossil raw material making his sculptures visible for the first time. With his works, Molodkin refers to the fact that art offers a space that is not only occupied by political lust for power and economic interests but is also dominated by this.
The works of the 1961 born Austrian artist Norbert Schaberl are characterised by synaesthesia. Kashya Hildebrand exhibits acrylic paintings, which follow in the tradition of Rothko and Graubner with their meditative areas of colour. With up to 70 thin layers of colour superimposed upon one another Schaberl, whose works are collected in Europe and the USA, achieves the apparent lifting of the two-dimensionality of the pictures.
The Schwarz gallery from Greifswald focuses its exhibition at the art.fair exclusively on the works of Norbert Frensch, born in 1960. He has been grappling for the past 13 years with the motif of a metallic bowl in various formats. This becomes the vehicle for a virtuoso description in painted form. Frensch elaborates upon the coming into being of his object in the classic combination of oil on linen. From a very dark, not further defined space, shimmering bodies emerge that are recognisable by slight reflections of light. We guess at, rather than recognise, the metal bowl that these form part of. This makes the object appear precious, as if locked in a safe. Frensch works with the various standpoints and changes the observer’s angle of incidence.
For the first time, the art.fair is expanding the exhibition program to include two special exhibitions, the Gesellschafter art.award and the International Photography Award.
Together with the dieGesellschafter.de / Aktion Mensch project the art.fair in July called upon the public to grapple artistically with the subject of “What kind of a society do we want to live in?” in the media of painting and photography. The ten contributions judged to be best by an expert jury will be presented at the art.fair in a special exhibition. The winner will then be determined by a public vote. Every visitor will be able to vote at the art.fair on which work best reflects the future of society. In addition, voting will be possible via the Internet as of 9.10.2006 at www.art-fair.de and at dieGesellschafter.de. The winner will be announced on 05.11.2006 at 11.00 at the art.fair.
The International Photography Award (IPA) is one of the most renowned international photography competitions worldwide, despite the fact that this year is only the fourth time it is being advertised. The best amateur and professional photographers from the fields of advertising, architecture, books, pictorial art, nature, people and further special categories are honoured by the IPA. On the initiative and thanks to the support of Pilsner Urquell it has succeeded in bringing selected works from this international photography competition in Germany to a broader public. At the art.fair around 40 photographic works from the IPA will be shown in a special exhibition.
In recent years, the art.fair has created a new position for itself in the market as a visitor-friendly fair with a special atmosphere. Art should be an experience. Therefore, every year the experience is supplemented by a multi-facetted supporting program consisting of installations, performances, live music, DJ-ing, VJ-ing and parties. Relaxation can be found in the lounge and in the loft, where visitors can plunge into a world of light and sound.
1.11.2006 Vernissage, entrance 1830
2.11.2006 to 5.11.2006
Thurs - Sat 1400 to 2200, Sun 1100 to 1900
EXPO XXI, Gladbacher Wall 5, 50670 Cologne
This year the art.fair is offering guided tours for the first time. Further information from 0221 – 420 393 – 13 or email@example.com.
Experience art – art.fair 2006.