Artist: Reena Spaulings
Venue: Galerie NEU and MD 72, Berlin
Date: August 6 – September 7, 2013
Full gallery of images, press release and link available after the jump.
Images courtesy of Galerie NEU and MD 72, Berlin
In her first solo exhibition at Galerie NEU, Reena Spaulings is showing new installation-based works that refer to the space of Mehringdamm 72 and its preceding exhibition. For this previous exhibition at the gallery, American artist John Knight took down the wooden panels on the roof of the old gallery space in Berlin Mitte and installed them in the exact same order on the walls of Mehringdamm 72. Reena Spaulings’ paintings echo the show by taking up the grain of the wooden panels as a motif. Produced with simple means, the works are reminiscent of ideas connected to DIY and décor painting. Through its display in the gallery’s offices, they extend the idea of the panels beyond the exhibition space. While John Knight’s exhibition can be understood as a retroization of institutional critique, Reena Spaulings’ works subvert this idea. Because everything has already been subjected to a process of problematization, critical ambitions in their original appearance don’t seem fruitful anymore. Considering this as a premise and further undermining it, is part of Reena Spaulings’ artistic practice.
Taking the work The New Dealers, most recently shown at Galería Bacelos in Vigo, Spain (2013) and former at Kunsthalle Zürich (2007), as a point of departure, the series of oil portraits of professional colleagues is extended and presented in postcard format in several postcard carousels distributed throughout the corridor. Using painterly means, the parameters and contexts of artistic production are here incorporated or absorbed. The postcard format links these conditions to their distribution and references the economization of artistic processes. In the play between the gatekeepers and the artist, a reference system is built up: alluding to subject construction and at the same time responding to the given situation in which connections to the work of colleagues and friends are created.