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MAKITA

12.08.10 | Comment?

MAKITA

An Exhibition by artists Loukia Alavanou (Gr) and Hannah Heilmann (Dk).

Co-curated by Mathias Kryger (Dk).

Opening 5 – 21:00 pm, November 18.

The exhibition is open: November 18 – December 5 2011.

MAKITA

An Exhibition by artists Loukia Alavanou (Gr) and Hannah Heilmann (Dk).

Co-curated by Mathias Kryger (Dk).

Opening 5 – 21:00 pm, November 18.

The exhibition is open: November 18 – December 5 2011.

After working in collaboration to create the performance Conformer and Purposers with chamber musicians from Ensemble Midtvest at Herning Museum of Contemporary Art (HEART) and Møstings Hus in Copenhagen, Loukia Alavanou and Hannah Heilmann now present the exhibition Makita at Modtar Projects. The show has been co-curated by curator and fellow artist Mathias Kryger.

The exhibition folds around the architecture as a theatrical gesture that corresponds with the paintings and posters adorning the walls in the legendary workshop of the exhibition building space, collected by an anonymous craftsman, most likely in the 1970’s.

For Heilmann and Alavanou these walls in the workshop seem to almost eliminate the need for making another exhibition, but the artists are intrigued by the idea of the person who created this compilation of images: tapping into a sailor-like fantasy of strange women and beautiful places, which is in peculiar accordance with certain themes in the two artists respective work.

Willingly or not, the wall is an archive of near-random material, and yet it also functions as a small record of a particular male romanticizing of the workshop as a male retreat. Hence the exhibition is also a seemingly random archive of work, and is named Makita – a cartoonlike, exotic woman’s name. Nevertheless, as anyone even vaguely familiar with woodwork will know, the lady is a powertool, in most cases a saw.

In the end the exhibition also plays with the thought of the area’s history as a red light district. Alavanou and Heilmann have created a work specifically for Modtar, playing on the calendar girl, on time passing, not so rosy stuff turned rosy then fading.

Loukia Alavanou have been working in Copenhagen in the DIVA residency with kind support from the Danish Arts Council. Loukia Alavanou and Hannah Heilmann have been producing the installation/video performance Conformers and Purposers and the exhibition Makita with kind support from and at the Danish Art Workshops.

About the artists:

Loukia Alavanou (b. 1979 Athens) Through her animations and multi-channel installations Alavanou explores the language of cinema in relation to desire. She weaves together extracts from classic Hollywood movies and cartoons, contemporary horror films and found photographs from personal and social sources. Often focusing on images of woman and domesticity, the work examines the ways in which early Hollywood cinema has shaped to date our understanding of femininity, and how female role models constructed by it permeate consciousness from an early age. “Often emerging from an intense black background, the images move with a startling vitality and colour, and as we watch them we experience an unsettling reversal: charm becomes terror, hope becomes despair and clarity becomes confusion. Acoustically, there is a parallel process: the continuity of sound becomes discontinuity, and the beauty of a perfectly pitched voice becomes stark and tragic. Strange intrusions punctuate both the visual and acoustic threads, indexing a reality much closer to ourselves than what the products of popular culture are designed to protect us against.” (Darian Leader)

Alavanou is a greek artist who lives in London and is represented by Rodeo gallery in Istanbul. She graduated from the Royal College of Art/ Photography in 2005, and since then she has exhibited internationally, including the Deste Foundation, the Breeder Projects and the National Theatre in Athens, nca/ nichido contemporary art in Tokyo, T1+2 Gallery in London, Gallery Eugen Lendl in Graz and at the “12th Biennial of Moving Image”, Geneva. She was the winner of the Deste Prize in 2007.

Hannah Heilmann, (former Ingen Frygt) (b. 1978 Copenhagen) pursues the construction of an imagery in which cultural coding stands out clearly, while being disbanded at the same time, revealing it’s random joints, so that the construct may rebuild itself anew without prejudice. Her work takes place as video, installation, computer collage, staged photography and explorations of poetic language. It often contains a performative element. She fuses images of seemingly mundane situations of experience with the phantasmagoric: A woman sits in front of her computer. Another person sleeps in homely yet strange surroundings. One has a body entirely made of brains, another is burned, and yet a third one is making a face. Everything is mystical and therefore nothing is: The subject matter combines notions of history-as-sensibility, society’s longings and personal nonsense within shifting hierarchies, using the image as an ancient, democratic instrument with which one can conjure up anything.

Hannah Heilmann have been working extensively in collaboration recently with Loukia Alavanou and in the 8 person/4 group-collective Party and Lost, as well as with mountain tribe women in Sa Pa in Vietnam in the fall 2009. Most importantly she has for 9 years been part of the collective consciousness of Ingen Frygt, represented by Andersens Contemporary. She considers her work within Ingen Frygt her primary formal education. Nevertheless she has conducted studies art history at the University of Copenhagen to date. In 2010 also had Hannah Heilmann participating in the show Ein Fest für Boris at Contemporary Fine Art’s new space Vittorio Manalese. She is currently about to move to the Flux Factory in New York for three months.

Mathias Kryger (b. 1977) is an independent curator, art writer and artist. In his curating he deals extensively with issues of gender and sexuality (as in the case with the exhibition LYST at Overgaden Insitute of Contemporary Art 2009) and with the construction of reality (as in the case with the exhibition A Flag for Every Occasion, WAS 2010). In dealing with art discourse, Mathias Kryger challenges the art theoretical language in an attempt at what he calls Performative practises of writing touching upon the poetic and non linear and challenging the text as authority. As an artist Mathias Kryger currently investigates layers of the biographical in a one year project called The Year of the Whitney Houston.

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