Funktionieren - performative printmaking workshop as art installation, mixed media, wood-printing plates and tools, variable sizes - 2016

 

»A complete printing workshop as an exhibition. Each phase – from the ideas for the woodcuts to be carved and the production of the tools (the printing blocks) to the printing itself, and then the display and sale of the printed pictures – is made transparent to visitors and is part of the installation. The whole process makes up this work of art. The aphorisms which I spent months carving on the wood and printing with my team refer to the content of posts that reach me through social media and constantly preoccupy me. They are slogans with a political and philosophical stance such as “KNOWLEDGE IS DANGEROUS”, “CONTROL IS NECESSARY” and “EMPATHY IS NAÏVE”. The link between today’s information media and the woodcut –the oldest form of printing – is a key element of the work. The ability to reach countless people within a few seconds with copy and paste contrasts with a printing method over 1,000 years old taking hours if not days. To experience ‘Funktionieren’, I require time from the people visiting this installation. It’s a process of deceleration in which the installation’s concentrated, contemplative atmosphere helps the reproduction process to be perceived, including emotionally, and encourages intensive consideration of the content conveyed. In times of rising populism and the ever-faster consumption
of information, I’m interested in creating situations addressing how public opinion is influenced socially and politically by means of digital distribution methods. Instead of being a passive piece, ‘Funktionieren’ calls on the artist, the gallery and also visitors to adopt a new viewpoint and interpretation.« 

Installation view at Blain|Southern Gallery, Berlin, Germany and Blain|Southern Gallery London, United Kingdom.