Gallery Weekend Berlin 2017
A year ago I visited Berlin and what I have experienced I couldn’t forget and was living with all these memories I gained while visiting galleries, exploring the city and getting lost. There was something; there was something about the city, places, culture and art.
I never was a weekend person and always avoided crowds, and unfortunately I missed the Gallery Weekend. Many places were closed and I only saw bits.
So, when I found out the dates of the next Gallery Weekend Berlin, I knew that I have to see it myself. I think, this was my first biggest attended art event.
Within few days, I visited dozens of galleries and witnessed over 30 exhibitions (after 32 I kind of lost a number and I haven’t collected all the statements).
It was worth it; some exhibitions weren’t so exciting, but some did really take breath away.
Another thing worth to be mentioned that I was pretty excited to see how much art costs and that people are actually buying it! Prices start from 500 eur and it was only for small sized drawings. But an average price I have seen was might be 7000 eur. It went as high as 40000 and more… Shocked and glad that art has price.
Advice to everyone – know your value 🙂
Gallery Weekend Berlin
Writing a post after 2 weeks, so I will try my best to remember all that excitement of some seen pieces. One of the first places I visited was Paper Positions at Bikini Berlin. They held an art fair of 30 participating galleries. I was glad to see so much of drawing and narrative based work.
Few stood out:
Contrast, composition, boldness, clear but abstract
Big scale drawings that immediately drawn my eye to it
I also popped by Import Projects and accidentally came an hour earlier. But people working there were so nice, that they let us in and turned all equipment on. It was an exhibition Sierra Negra by Paul Rosero Contreras.
The artist explores the continuum between representing and altering a given landscape, while also probing the distinction between objectivity and enigma. Drawing on fieldwork in locations including active volcanos in the Galapagos Archipelago, Sierra Negra presents perspectives on evolution, experiments and mutation.
From Import Projects press release
I really enjoyed three-video loop Los Andes Pavilion; slow paced, but repetitive and full of colours.
The works explore how human, animal, and plant life are conditioned by unsettling volcanic landscape.
More about it is here
One of the best exhibitions I visited was Ivana Franke: Retreat into Darkness. Towards a Phenomenology of the Uknown at Schering Stiftung Gallery. It wasn’t even a part of Gallery Weekend, but it was running alongside (so as many other galleries).
I couldn’t take pictures, because it was impossible. I was led by gallery assistant to black out space and asked to stay for 3-4 minutes until my eyes will adapt. In the beginning I only was able to see two tiny lights, but within time I was able to see more and more. The first experience that some ghostly image was coming towards me. I was slightly shocked, confused and excited. I couldn’t figure it out, yet it was very difference experience.
I think I spent about 20 minutes or might be even more. When my eyes got adjusted to the darkness I was able to see moving lights and objects, my mind was creating. It was large frame with mesh stretched over and spinning. When it spins – it creates various images; reminded me of some microorganisms and creatures from somewhere else. It had a feeling either being under water or different planet? Whenever that mesh structure catches the light it projects something abstract. Overall, it is too hard to explain the whole experience. But it made me realize that some things can be recorded, photographed or seen through phone screen. We rush through exhibitions, exhibits, statements and rarely try to live that moment. This particular work made me feel relaxed, peaceful and thoughtful. It was somehow like meditation.
Do we only see what we know? What can dislocate us from our comfortable, predefinded point of view and challenge our gaze on the world?
The project Retreat into Darkness. Towards a Phenomenology of the Unknown by Ivana Franke investigates the limits of our perception.
With her new installation, Ivana Franke takes us into a visual and bodily experience able to break our preconceived idea of reality, lending it other dimensions that are decidedly fictive, imaginary, and cosmic. Creating “epistemological ruptures”, those experiences give us the capacity to imagine, to challenge existing common modes of knowledge, and to create room for different possible futures.
The project includes an exhibition curated by Elena Agudio, a symposium, and a publication, along with a series of experiments on the experience of seeing the unknown, conducted by the artist in collaboration with the vision scientist Bilge Sayim.
From Schering Stiftung Gallery website
Some other exhibitions are worth to mention would be Sarah Lucas FunQroc and Bjarne Melgaard A Drawing show at Contemporary Fine Arts.
Sarah Lucas exhibition
A drawing show by Bjarne Melgaard was fun. I enjoyed the drawings a lot, which felt very personal. Although, in the statement it was said that
drawings do not necessarily represent anything
It was presented like a diary and shows boredom and melancholy, self-exploration and futile wishes.
I also really enjoyed Ireen Zielonka Pneuma show at a gallery nearby CFA, Galerie Tore Suessbier.
The drawings were good quality, mystical and nostalgic. But the best part for me was the installation. I went to so many exhibitions and I was so fed up of those wood frames and boring installs… So, I adored artist and the gallery for mounting drawings on black foam board and using clips.
Size wise, the most impressive was Jonas Burgert Zeitlaich exhibition at Blain Southern.
Esther Schipper Gallery was very posh. They had few exhibitions going on and waiters making cappuccinos, lattes and walking around with snacks. But only for those, who might look like potential buyers. Obviously, I didn’t look like one; with my backpack and tired face of walking miles and skipping lunch.
Some pieces they had, were interesting. I enjoyed looking at apple drawings by Anri Sala
Is anybody home lol
An exhibition at Eigen + Art Lab by !Mediengruppe Bitnic
Monika Jarecka Zweimalzwei at Galerie Weisser Elefant
I also enjoyed Guan Xiao video work at Kraupa – Tuscany Zeidler, but was too tired to take photographs…
More info is here
I have a pile of statements from this event, but it is hard to put them all here. Only wrote about most memorable exhibits and from which I might benefit from.
It was a great weekend and I can’t wait to visit next one. It is very inspiring and motivating 🙂