Is material only something you can touch?
How important is physical perception in the digital age of disembodiment?
In the age when reality becomes increasingly more virtual – when material resources such as books, newspapers, magazines as well as currency are progressively utilized in digital formats and possession of something becomes more illusionary and ephemeral, when art exists as a concept or an event to be experienced only in that particular moment or viewed on a screen - how do we establish what constitutes as material?
The core of this exhibition is centered around the notion of material, both in the sense of how artists use material in their practice and the idea of materiality and immateriality in a broader sense. The objective is to raise the question of what can actually be referred to as material and what is immaterial in the context of contemporary art in the digital era.
The participating artists work with different media, constantly playing with this notion of materiality and immateriality. The exhibited works range from mixing virtual with tangible matter, like weaving and digital print in the works by Stefanie Kägi or the combination of physical objects with similar computer generated objects as seen in the video piece by Armin Keplinger, to the multilayered collages by Jazoo Yang which preserve memories by collecting paint from graffiti covered walls and organizing them into compositions.
Linus Rauch converts suggestive materials like used parachutes into poetic meditations that directly reflect on materiality as well as what constitutes as a painting while Alessandro Rauschmann is contributing a performance as a form of expression of materiality/immateriality.
The lipstick-on-mirror drawings by Natalia Korotyaeva are shifting the role and importance of material in figurative art towards the focus of art’s momentary meditative essence, while Perja Ivanova uses living microorganisms as materials to speculate about the ecology and poetry of the future.
The touch of elusiveness of material in Sonja Ofen’s practice is based on text, which ceases to exist in the final work leaving only traces of blank spaces and lines on transparent paper. In a different form, this aesthetic moment can also be found in the site-specific art by David Kroell, which at first is barely visible and almost dissolves into the exhibition space.
Often born out of something ephemeral and intangible such as memories, fantasies, dreams and ideas, art serves as a constant bridge between the real and the imagined. Even more so in this age of disembodiment, when physical experiences become relatively scarce, art actively engages the senses and connects the viewers by evoking an aesthetic experience between material and immaterial, giving room for physical perception, communication and interpretation.
Curated by Yana Pitenko.