Solid and still liquid—this opposing pair delineates the parameters of an exhibition dealing with contemporary sculpture and surveying certain current tendencies on view at the Kunsthalle Münster. On the one hand, the exhibition blends and appropriates artistic practices from the 1960s to the 1990s—readymades, appropriations, concepts, performance, and participation all stage differing narratives subjectively negotiating specific phenomena of our time. Often, such materially poor works appear with little physicality and thus seem fleeting, making them appear only more suggestive. On the other hand, one observes a new fascination for the aesthetic potential of material, for it’s form and expressive possibilities—whether the works are on pedestals or freestanding. Created single-handedly in the studio the works exhibit no shyness for the figurative, for coincidence, for purely formal decisions or for constructed mythologies. These works highlight and redefine the boundaries of visual art as it relates to design, to mechanical process, to documentation and to scientific practice.
In a digitalized present, with its confusion of time and place—a present that offers limitless possibilities but also little orientation and few livable environments—Solid Liquids risks the entanglement of time and place and our tendency to relate them to our own life experiences. Instead of tracing global models of meaning, the works are guided by their own needs and circulate around a core that appears as an inaccessible, blind spot pointing to the outside world, which seems to say “Tell me, who and what am I?” The works in the Kunsthalle Münster invite the viewer to concentrate on advancing into these deeper layers. But there, where the material access and revision is enabled, one finds only additional surfaces. In their surprising complexity and non-linear ordering, these layers pull one’s view into an stunningly sensory labyrinth where reason stumbles—not least in regards to the human desire to recognize one’s self, independently of how one is seen by others.