Exhibition // Multiples, Textures, and Phone Photos at Sprüth Magers

Article by Alena Sokhan in Berlin // Saturday, Sep. 20, 2014

Among the hyper-stimulation of Berlin Art Week, Mitte gallery Sprüth Magers offers a chance for art lovers to ground themselves in three exhibitions that are as shockingly simple as they are insightful.

Radiopictures is a series of paintings by Thomas Scheibitz that boldly contrast discordant painting techniques, creating large scale works that absorb the viewer in meditative textures. Artificially bright colors are layered on earthy tones, flatly opaque paints interrupt washes of transparency, mechanical lines and geometric forms clash with gestural smears. These paintings engage with questions of signification, construction, patterns, and the strange dream space of montage.

Thomas Demand‘s Dailies 2008-2014 brings into presence ephemeral or banal disruptions of everyday life in a series of delicately aesthetic images. These images are taken with a phone camera, and skillfully printed with dye transfer, a process that lends the kitschy nature of phone images a beautifully crafted quality. These images, which border on insignificant scenes – a pattern of colored tacks on a board, a piece of waste paper in a floor grate – nevertheless effect a strong sense of singular tension and determined presence.

Similarly simple and affective, Arte Povera and ‘Multipli’ – Torino 1970-1975 explores the process of reproduction and the relation and separation of objects in a series. Multipli refers to a gallery in Torino in the 1970’s, a unique collective whose only relation was a desire to form a community and a desire to experiment with making limited edition multiples. The starting points and the developments of each artist’s multiples were extremely disparate: everything from screenprints on stainless steel to marks on skin. The works they produced were incredibly high quality artisanal pieces that challenged the abstractly intellectual and individualist nature of “high art”.

The three parts maintain their difference, but are related in the mood they evoke in the viewer. None of the works force upon the viewer any message or “point”, instead they invite us to admire the concrete and the meaningful beauty of textures.


“Radiopictures” – THOMAS SCHEIBITZ

“Dailies 2008-2014” – THOMAS DEMAND
“Torino 1970-1975” – ARTE POVERA AND ‘MULTIPLI’
Exhibition: Sep. 18 – Nov. 01, 2014
Oranienburger Straße 18 (click here for map)

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