Inauguration, September 2
Alicja Kwade and Gregor Hildebrandt present the jointly conceived exhibition "Mucho Màs" at Galeria Pelaires. Since their studies at the University of the Arts in Berlin, the artists have repeatedly realized exhibitions together.
The exhibited works by Hildebrandt and Kwade interweave to form their own cosmos of reciprocal references and memories, like mutual mises en abyme in a site-specific context.
Entering the exhibition, one encounters a deep black granite slab, into which a photograph taken by Alicja Kwade, has been engraved by machine. Selbstportrait mit Diabloa (2013)shows Gregor Hildebrandt in December 2012 during the fellowship residency "Résidences Informelles" he attended together with Kwade in Martinique.
On the floor, seemingly carelessly discarded, lies a water bottle half protruding from a slate floe. As if washed ashore by the sea, as a relic and fossil of our present time, it leads further into the room. In contrast to Selbstportrait mit Diabloa (2013), it was sculpturally carved out of the black slate block.
In the patio, Kwade's Tunnel-Tell (Ceci Sera) (2020), awaits. The natural stone, raised to eye level, is seemingly effortlessly perforated by a highly polished stainless-steel tube that kaleidoscopically captures and focuses the surroundings. The sculpture engages with the presence and absence of matter at the same time, with positive and negative space.
The relationship between positive and negative is further evident in Hildebrandt's seasons cycle: spring begins bright and delicate until the story of a year finally accumulates in contrast in the final image und den Winter (2020). The overlays are created by the rip-off process, in which the removal of audio tape adds image information in form of the magnetic coating, so the previously painted image becomes visible. Through the rip-off process invented by Hildebrandt, each subsequent image contains the information of the previous one, and positive and negative uniques of the same motif are created again and again.
The four sections of a year are found as a continuous, wave-like pattern of golden pocket watch hands stretching across the entire picture surface of Ein Jahr (2022). On 2x3m, clockwise in succession, all the hours that a full year measures are visible. The even and rhythmic pattern arises all by itself analogously to the position of the clock hands on a clock face.
The perception, systematization and representation of time is also a unifying element of the stool, tobacco pipe and record, which together evoke a bar scene. After all, annual rings found in wood and grooves in the vinyl are purely carriers of information for the lifespan of a tree or the length and tones of a song. Die Schwarze Acht (2021),is a record cut to classic LP size, formerly unusually large. Its play hole lays now off-centered on the shimmering black PVC disc due to the cutting process. Through this apparent loss of data, another dimension of meaning has been added to the data carrier and is reminiscent of representations of a billiard ball.
Circular motion and spiral form are also found in Kwades Causal Emergence and Hildebrandt's Laubenlanze (2012). Like a mast without rigging, the latter, a seemingly endless column of laserdiscs, leads up to the second floor.
There, a lemon peel cast in bronze spirals up opposite Carne trémula (2021), a rip-off colored in the Spanish national colors. With CitrusQuantum, Kwade visualizes the examination of string theory, according to which the most elementary particles of matter resemble trembling violin strings. The lemon is a humorous self-portrait as its own elementary particle, but also an idea and symbol of the Mediterranean. Together with Hildebrandt's Carne trémula (2021), it is a nod in reference to the exhibition site.
The final element is a single palm-like column made of white marble. In the 3D-dataset, the associated figure, an athlete from antiquity, has been removed - almost a digital rip-off. The process of removing the body leaves a distinct calf imprint in the column and can be humorously understood as a sculptural (summer) note of absence from ancient times.
Despite different methods and media, contentual and formal references can be traced through the selected works of Alicja Kwade and Gregor Hildebrandt, leaving the impression that there is still "Mucho Màs" to decipher.