Let's face the music and dance
Group exhibition at Caranguejo Project Space showing painters Goia Mujalli, Clare Price and Theresa Volpp.
Harpers Bazaar Germany
October Print Issue , 2019
Kunst und Liebe- entweder es funkt oder nicht. Bazaar's radikal subjektive Auswahl an jungen KünstlerInnen, deren Werke der Anfang einer Leidenschaft werden könnten.
Office Magazine NYC
September 13, 2019
The Art of Becoming
Ahead of Berlin Art Week, office caught up with five faces of Berlin’s art scene: Theresa Volpp, Marius Glauer, Clara Brender, Robert Grunenberg and Jeewi Lee. We followed and photographed them throughout the city at the spots that matter to them most. Get to know more about the artists below.
Theresa Volpp is a painter exploring the perception of painting itself, having had a background with Graffiti. She studied at Kunstakademie Düsseldorf in the class of Katharina Grosse. Volpp is currently working on her new exhibition with painters Clare Price and Goia Mujalli, opening in London in November.
Trafo Gallery, Praha
Berlin Praha Barter
Vystavující: Christian August, Jim Avignon, Hendrik Czakainski, Marion Jdanoff, Johannes Mundinger, Stohead, Sebas Velasco, Theresa Volpp, Fabian Warnsing, Lars Wunderlich
Kurátor: Pascal Feucher
After the first exhibition, titled “Praha Berlin Barter” (with the Czech artists by Trafo Gallery during March/April 2019) which was hosted by Urban Spree in Berlin, the gallery is this time being hosted by Trafo Gallery in Prague in a new group exhibition called “Berlin Praha Barter”.
The artists are representative of the new Berlin scene that emerged since the Fall of the Wall, starting with the precursor – Jim Avignon – quite known for his painted decors of many of the Berlin squatted clubs of the early 90’s and large historic murals (East Side Gallery) and whose remixed cubist/pop art/Neue Sachlichkeit aesthetics are iconic of the Berlin art scene.
Going along the figurative trail, Marion Jdanoff develops a highly poetic and fairytale-like universe, fueled with middle age tales, strange characters, fabled animals in a rich palette of colors. Fabian Warnsing paints large-sized canvases in a faux-naïf style, creating still life paintings, urban landscapes and everyday scenes.
The graphite drawings of Lars Wunderlich are part of a series from 2017 titled “East German Realities”, whereby the artist applies his process of distortion and glitches to scenes witnessed in the Eastern parts of Germany where nationalism is still a vivid reality. Sebas Velasco explores the remnants of the Eastern bloc in a series of oil paintings and drawings based on scenes from Yugoslavia and elsewhere, Plattenbau, old cars, graffiti, and neon hotel signs. Going further, Hendrik Czakainski creates 3D large-scale post-architectural panels which are radical anatomical explorations of the urban body. His works are impressive, immersive, chaotic urban scenes captured from above, on a bird’s eye view perspective.
Besides figurative and architecture-inspired works, a strong line at Urban Spree has always been “post-graffiti abstraction”, i.e. using the codes, techniques, roots, flow and philosophy of graffiti, where the letter becomes an abstraction, a substance.
While Stohead is closer in some instances to the true form of the letter (calligraphy, handstyle, overwriting), he has always experimented beyond it, trying to deconstruct and dissolve the Letter in a post-graffiti approach. Theresa Volpp’s practice is more focused on the very subject of abstract art and bears only a faint distance to graffiti, although some form of automatic writing exists in her work, in a pre-graffiti way, as if abstract art is trying to reconnect with a certain flow but before the invention of graffiti..
Christian August creates multiple layers of grey colors by erasing, scratching, repainting, and finally achieving a wall texture (in the scratchy meaning of Dubuffet and Brassaï in the early 20th century), then completing his work by a stunning dash of ultramarine color, the artist’s persistent signature.
Johannes Mundinger has also strong roots in wall painting and creates delicate abstract works in subdued tones, large shapes and blocs, stunning and contemplative abstract landscapes.
Oscillating between abstract and figurative art, Berlin Praha Barter shows a diversity of approaches and styles, seemingly loosely connected but united by an undercurrent practice of wall painting and shared values.
Urban Spree Galerie was created in Berlin-Friedrichshain in 2012 as a 400 sqm “artist-run” space with the objective of discovering and promoting the emerging international wave of post-graffiti painters and artists, with a strong focus on local talents.
The gallery is an essential part of Urban Spree, a 1.700 sqm independent multi-cultural complex comprising a Biergarten, a concert room, a bookshop, 5 artist studios, a screen printing studio, itself set in a 70.000 sqm postindustrial creative compound in the heart of Berlin (R.A.W.).
The gallery benefits from its large urban grassroots ecosystem and offers its invited artists an ideal space for experimentation through ambitious on-site residencies and monthly exhibitions that usually involve painting the outside walls of the compound.
It is armed with these values of generosity and openness, shared with Trafo Gallery, that we together decided to initiate a gallery exchange.
January 11, 2019
7 emerging Berlin artists you need to know in 2019
You don’t need us to tell you that Berlin is something of a Mecca when it comes to attracting emerging and underground artists. Every year, young artists flock to the city in their droves in search of bright studio spaces, rustic artist abodes, cheap beer and döner, and of course, a nightlife just ripe for exhibition opening tales of excess. And unlike its counterparts in London, Paris or New York, the art scene here is also relatively accessible due to state-funded galleries and a plethora of independent projects spaces that stud the city from Wedding to Weserstraße. As we start a new year, we take a look at some of the most promising artists making waves in the German capital — from those who are just shy of making their big breakthrough to those bubbling beneath the surface.
Theresa Volpp is a recent graduate from the Art Academy in Düsseldorf and studied under the renowned painter, Katharina Grosse. We came across her work at Schaufenster Gallery in the group show, Dirty Voyage, in 2018, where her abstract approach to painting caught our eye. Volpp’s work explores how a canvas might be “a limiting and art historically-loaded, medium” but how it can articulate something nonverbal and complex at the same time.
Scrims and Blurs
Hosted by El Museo de Los Sures, and featuring current Residency Unlimited artists Kinu Kamura (France), Julie Leidner (USA), Mads Lindberg (Denmark) and Theresa Volpp (Germany), Scrims & Blurs presents a navigable pathway of paintings, drawings, sculptures, collages, photographs and partially site-specific installations. It's an exhibition that invites visitors to look at, into and through a variably interactive array of objects while pondering notions of blurry translucence, reflective transparency, dematerialization and and self-refraction.
Klasse Katharina Grosse stellt aus
Alongside an immediate engagement with the Kunsthalle’s archive materials, more extensive and abstract engagement with the idea of the archive may ensue from consideration of the archive as a site of memory at the cross-section of heritage, historical burden, think tank, memory-architecture and much more. The category “archive” and the categories in which the archive is invested and so by which it is brought about such as art history, cultural identities and individual mythologies should be critically questioned. What role does the archive play for the individual artistic creation and the perception of an institution? How does the now-time [Jetzt-Zeit] deal with and evaluate the past? To what extent do not only collective, but also private archives themselves represent forms of artistic practice?
In collaboration with the curatorial team of the Kunsthalle, various medial formats can be worked through based on the different emphases and approaches of the professors and classes. As the notion “Working Title” in the exhibition title indicates, the exhibition has an open-ended, experimental format. Permanent access not only to the perpetually renewed implementations of the exhibition but also to the discursive exchange, work processes and structures will be open to the visitors. It is left up to each individual the extent to which they take part in the exchange, simply observe or deliberately interfere and in so doing enter into the artistic works and “final result” of the exhibition and, by
Further items on the program agenda between theater, performance, concerts, workshops and presentations from invited speakers will be held under the label “Performing Archive,” in search of ever new accents of the archive. Information regarding the participants, the program and the shifting uses of the spaces will be made available shortly before the opening of the exhibition.
Elephant and Castle
At regular intervals the calcareous matter I was secreting came out coloured, so a number of lovely stripes were formed running straight through the spirals, and this shell was a thing different from me but also the truest part of me, the explanation of who I was, my portrait translated into a rhythmic system of volumes and stripes and colours and hard matter, [...] when you looked closer you discovered all sorts of little differences that later on might become enormous."
-Italo Calvino - Cosmicomics: The Spiral
The Spiral takes its name from an eponymous story by Italo Calvino. Narrated from the perspective of a mollusc, it depicts the animal's peculiar creation. Sensing its making as a form of self-expression, the mollusc becomes mesmerised by its becoming and falls in love with the vicinity. Eventually with eyes, its sight reveals the body as a place that senses both what lies nearby and in the distance.
Like in Calvino's story, the exhibition conflates fascination with repulse, the familiar with the unexpected and a compact world with the delicacy of magnitude. Merging what is supposedly opposed into a single subject of contemplation, the artworks unravel their significance while we are moving through the show. A distant angle evokes the urge for closer examination, whereas proximity demands more space. Micro- and macrocosm are in a constant spiel of give and take, and question the very nature of what we might call a detail or an overview. Within this fusion of conflicting matter lies the odd but captivating of this exhibition's story. Appearing to us like an entangled spiral of sensation, near and far sight unite through one aesthetic journey.
Text by: Christian Lübbert
Dalson Printhouse Gallery
Group exhibition of DAAD scholarship holders in London.
University of London
14th of July 2016, 6-9 pm
14th-18th of July 2016
Fr, Sat, Mo 10 am - 7 pm,
Sun 10 am - 4 pm
Goldsmiths MFA Show
Location: Goldsmiths Ben Pimlot Building, Laurie Grove Baths & Richard Hoggart Building. Exhibition is open for everyone.
31st of March 2016, 7 pm
1st-17th of April 2016
Tue-Fr 4-7 pm,
Sat 12-7 pm,
Sun 1-4 pm
No Lifeguard On Duty
“There was a wall. It did not look important. It was built of uncut rocks roughly mortared. An adult could look right over it, and even a child could climb it. Where it crossed the roadway, instead of having a gate it degenerated into mere geometry, a line, an idea of boundary. But the idea was real. It was important. […] Like all walls it was ambiguous, two-faced. What was inside it and what was outside it depended upon which side of it you were on.”
“No Lifeguard on Duty” is a group exhibition focusing on the tension that lies between binaries. Exploring the concept of demarcation (and alternatively, what might or might not occur in its absence), the project invites eight London-based artists to engage with this theme through painting, installation, and video works.
The traditional image of the lifeguard conjures a sense of safety and well-being, and creates a boundary and set of rules. Therefore, the phrase “No Lifeguard on Duty” immediately connotes the opposite, suggesting possible danger or disorder. Here, a duality is established. The absence of a lifeguard blurs otherwise delineated borders and pushes the realm of limitations into a grey territory: safety may be lost, but a certain freedom is gained. The exhibition pays attention to the lines of demarcation – that which separate – and the indefiniteness and incertitude that the space between these lines manifest.
For example, Olivia Hernaïz addresses the stark divide between political parties, doing so in a playful manner by posing semi-childlike questions to leaders of different prominent parties. Her colorful cushions and (what appears to be a) light-hearted approach counter the heavy-handedness of the current political climate.
Pauline Batista’s work questions the difference between reality and myth, or rather, science and intuition and asks the viewer which might be more valid in reflecting upon the human condition. Taking oil and paint to create layers on a glass surface, Batista then projects scenes from the film Apocalypse Now through the glass to ultimately create a blurry, numbed image of violence.
Continuing in this meditation on human nature, Andrea Williamson uses celebrity and pop culture to evoke feelings of empathy and affection. Three iconic women – Lindsay Lohan, Oprah Winfrey, and Pema Chodron – have been morphed by the artist to express relations of care and compassion between them, replacing the stereotypical and judgemental gaze that we so often give. Williamson’s endeavour is a reversal of sensibility; not to seduce the viewer but to create a harmonious hybrid entity intended to ‘rescue the positive affections of love and spirituality from the seemingly superficial.’
Theresa Volpp’s paintings are the product of physical engagement. Glossy paints are poured over canvases that lay on the floor before Volpp shakes them to combine colors. In this way there is no direct effect on the emergence of the surface. The artist produces a loss of control, that reveals itself in the negation of the artists own signature. The implication is an interrogation of boundaries running between the artist’s subject and the object. While visually, the differentiation between colors is fairly evident, an alternative dichotomy is at work-between intentional bodily movements and spontaneity.
In a similar vein to Volpp’s merging of forms, James Clarke creates an overlap of imagery in his work, Torus (London–Hamburg). Influenced by the original handiwork of English World War II mapmakers at Hughenden Manor, Clarke employed their map of Hamburg as a springboard for his seemingly repetitive patterns. Together, these four paintings imbue one with a feeling of movement between borders whilst also serving as a nod to the histories of both London – the artist’s homebase – and Hamburg.
Frederic Klein examines the impact of the natural world upon the individual, rendering his experiences of exploring rugged (and often threatening) landscapes to the canvas. Klein routinely isolates himself in the wilderness, oftentimes for a number of days, allowing for the extreme conditions of his ventures act as a catalyst for his practice. The artist utilizes “subtitles” in his paintings, thus implying a distance exists between the artist and viewer that requires translation.
Similarly, the notion of distance is noticed in the video work of Francis Almendárez. The artist explores spatial dislocation in the context of deterritorialized post-modernity. He seeks the truth among those trampled underfoot by history: refugees herded into camps, women victimized by a brutal patriarchal society, indigenous people relocated and stripped of their identity – in other words, the survivors.
In her series of six paintings, titled “Où est le bec?”, Ingrid Berthon-Moine displays six simplistic figures of the male body, each in a different state of sexual arousement. Though all hang at different heights, the works are aligned along the tips of the erect penises. The title is the phonetic pronunciation of the surname of French novelist Michel Houellebecq, whose characters are regularly fatigued and hopeless. For Berthon-Moine, this depression points to the greater repercussions of capitalism: eventually, our individualism and liberalism provoke an internal tension between indulging limitless gratification, or perhaps, growing weary of constant desire.
Tony Tremlett and Caroline Elbaor