September 27th, 2013

Peter Kogler at Mezzanin

Peter Kogler at Mezzanin

Artist: Peter Kogler

Venue: Mezzanin, Vienna

Date: September 4 – October 2, 2013

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Peter Kogler at Mezzanin

Peter Kogler at Mezzanin

Peter Kogler at Mezzanin

Full gallery of images, press release and link available after the jump.


Images courtesy of Mezzanin, Vienna

Press Release:

We are delighted to announce the second part of the solo exhibition by Peter Kogler at Galerie Mezzanin. For the first time Peter Kogler presents his well known motive of the ant as a larger than life sculpture. Furthermore the exhibition comprises newly-made collages.

It is often organic and at the same time social systems of order which Peter Kogler tries to capture thematically. In the last exhibition space eight framed collages are installed on one wall – images from different medias, collected over years, layered with pen-plotter drawings – all fixated with magnets. “At the same time the preconditions of technological work processes are most closely linked with artistic concerns. Beyond the attempt to give computer processes, which form the basis of the image world of computer graphics, an aesthetically perceptible space, the structures and phenomena which go to make up digital communication are questioned. The complex structure of data flows is examined for its interactions with processes of movement in the world of physical experience. (…) “In that we contract, we are habits, at the same time we contract through contemplation,” (…) so Deleuze in order to trace the dynamics of repetition. Contraction and relaxation, the swelling and subsiding of bubbles and bodies could be drawn upon as leitmotifs for Peter Kogler‘s works. With them, the artist who sees himself as connected to the communications system, as part of the digital network, describes the complex layering of information and data transfer and at the same time examines its links back into social relationships.” Eva Maria Stadler, 2007

The collages are confronted with the ant-sculpture mentioned above which almost takes up the entire main space of the gallery. Peter Kogler first discovered the ant for himself in 1980 as he filmed one as it crept across a newspaper; he was fascinated of this small organism inmidst of a jumblr of letters. He also called attention to himself on an international stage with the subject of the ant. 1992 the then 33-year old artist installed in the entree of documenta IX, around the central work of Bruce Naumann his contribution – an ornamental wallpaper with ants. “Help me, hurt me”, it screamed from Nauman’s Video, while Kogler‘s compuer generated legion of ants crept obliviuosly its endless and aimless way along the outer walls.

“Kogler discovered the motif of the ant very early in his career. He saw in its symetrical body and web-like homes an ideal metaphor for the relation between body and architecture, between the organic and the technical as well as natural and artificial living space.” (Edelbert Köb, 2008)

“[…] as far as the ant is concerned, even media theoreticians like Vilém Flusser held it to be an eloquent symbol for the reality of life, one that oscillates between virtual artificiality and the unchallengeable laws of nature.” Rainer Fuchs 2008, who continues; Kogler too saw an ideal motif in the ant. Its symmetrical body and ability to build and use labyrinths as systems of orientation and activity also reconcile those contradictions in human society whose relationship to each other needs to be redefined under the conditions of mediatization: namely, the organic and the technological, the individual and the collective as well as the ornamentally abstracted symbols and the tangible sensuousness of life. […]The ant, to be seen as the embodiment of oppositions, “[…] both as a conventional exemplar of organization and order, but equally as an annoying disturber of peace or as a threatening killer […],” is a central motif in Kogler’s work.

“All Kogler’s works present themselves as fragments of virtual, endless rows, whose beginning and end remain hidden from the observer.” Boris Groys, 2004, who continues; “(They) suggest an unending etcetera—the eternal continuation of something that always remains the same. In this respect, Kogler’s works stand in succession to those of the minimalist artists of the sixties and seventies, such as Daniel Buren, Sol LeWitt or Donald Judd.”
“In Kogler’s work, unlike Daniel Buren’s or Sol LeWitt’s, all the fundamental motifs that have brought him to international fame in the last (…) years — the ants, the tubes and the human brain motif—are not in themselves abstract, content-free symbols but are deeply linked to something figurative that immediately activates the desire for readability, narration and translation. And, for Peter Kogler this is what makes them usable. For what is crucial to his artistic way of thinking is generating symbols that achieve their own autonomy precisely because they can bear different, ambivalent meanings.” Stephan Berg, 2004

Link: Peter Kogler at Mezzanin

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