KW Institute for Contemporary Art opened its doors for its Spring Programme 2017 after a brief closure due to renovations. Under the new directorship of Krist Gruijthuijsen, the inaugural programme intends to push forward multifaceted exhibitions based on the works of South-African artist Ian Wilson. The collaborative programme will oversee three solo presentations by Hanne Lippard, Paul Elliman and Adam Pendleton, drawing inspiration from Wilson’s exhibited works. Practices dealing with experimentation, style and ultimately the importance of “artist-driven” work will be highly emphasised during the upcoming art seasons and commissions.
Leading from his previous directorial role at Grazer Kunstverein, Gruijthuijsen, who was newly appointed as director and chief curator in July 2016, is set to build upon the rich history of KW using Wilson’s framework of dialogue-based art, viewing language as political acts. KW, which will remain the host for the Berlin Biennale, has centred the season’s opening on Wilson’s early time-based art, right up to his contemporary knowledge and non-knowledge-based practices. Through varied disciplines, Gruijthuijsen has curated a cross-cultural palette of work exploring the importance of a global contemporary art community.
Hanne Lippard’s installation is the first of the exhibitions debuting at KW. As part of her first institutional solo show, ‘Flesh’ is influenced by Wilson’s ‘Statements and Circles’. The piece poses a strong relationship between colour, content and form by reducing her work to a core minimum, namely her voice. In looking at transcendence, the skeletal structure that takes up the space of two floors is a timeless and personal look into contemporary conditions of “being flesh, without being physical”. Furthermore, her work will look to correlate to the following exhibitions presented by Elliman and Pendleton, whose work covers design, cultural identity and migration of voices.
Alongside the main programming, there will be a series of events: weekly lectures, performances, screenings and concerts entitled ‘The Weekends’. Closely inspired by Wilson’s insistence on not recording or photographing his work, limiting the documentation to discussions only, from January till May 2017, this programme will be founded on interests in dialogical formats and the roles of voice, sound and dematerialized practices in art. With performances from the Trisha Brown Dance Company and Germain Kruip, ‘The Weekends’ is set to strengthen the relationship between audiences and artists looking into forms and methods of communication.
Continuing on with a public practice, Gruijthuijsen has authorised a residency-style series, entitled ‘A Year With’. Conducted by British typographer and designer Will Holder, the series will draw attention to numerous design and publishing practices across the course of one year. With practicality, accessibility and publicity at the core of it, each month a new artist will be invited to collaborate with Holder using the archive of his publication work as stimulus. Together with first guest Bert Paulich, Holder has built and furnished a living space with suitable working conditions, including with his book collection (as public lending library for 2017). Holder is the editor for serial publication F.R.David, which as of 2017 will now be co-published by KW.
KW will also be hosting Robert Wilhite’s design installation, ‘Bob’s Pogo bar’, based on designs for the original space in the late 90s. Continuing on from the ‘Bob’s Your Uncle’ installation in Kunstverein Amsterdam, the bar will serve as an alternative space for discussion and performance within the framework of the institute’s artistic programme.
KW INSTITUTE FOR CONTEMPORARY ART
Exhibition: Jan. 20–Apr 19, 2017
Exhibition: Feb. 10–May 14, 2017
Exhibition: Jan. 20–May 14, 2017
Exhibition: Feb. 24–May 14, 2017
Auguststraße 69, 10117 Berlin, click here for map