We are delighted to be mounting the first gallery exhibition in Switzerland of works by Kathrin Sonntag (*1981, CH/DE) under the heading "ES".
Given the agility and humour with which Kathrin Sonntag charms something poetic or uncanny from the commonplace, her meticulously-staged settings with their furniture, photographs, watercolours and drawings, her slide series, and her films repeatedly surprise the viewer. As she herself puts it, she is intent on staging moments "when abstraction enters into the everyday".
The starting point for "ES" are pictures of spiritualist phenomena such as hovering tables and other strange events. The artist avails herself in various ways of the aesthetic and intellectual richness of such parallel worlds so as to develop her ideas for unexpected formal solutions which she uses as tools with which to reflect on the media - for example, in her photographic works of the complicatedly arranged rooms which also take into account the angle of the camera and subsequently the position of the viewers.
Some of the constants in Sonntag's work to date have been reflections, multi-refractions, a preference for black-and-white photography, and various allusions to the formal idiom of Constructivism. This is surely the reason why visitors to her exhibitions are often overcome by a slight feeling of melancholy, of nostalgia, engendered by the obvious but repeatedly disrupted references to the utopian aspects of modernism, to the past. This merging of nostalgia and conceptual approach gives rise to an emotional roller-coaster ride, awakening in the recipient a creative self-distance - which is an appropriate prerequisite for seeing and considering the world and oneself anew.
Last solo exhibitions and prizes/scholarships
2010 annex14, Raum für aktuelle Kunst, Bern; Future intérieur, Kunstraum Walcheturm, Zürich; 2009 Mittnacht, Swiss Institut, New York, „Superkalifragilistig-expialigetik", Gesellschaft für Aktuelle Kunst GAK, Bremen (Kat.)2009 Swiss Art Award; Prize of the Dr. Georg and Josi Guggenheim Foundation; 2008 Residency of flacc workspace for visual artists in Genk, Belgium