Current Exhibitions - Bie & Vadstrup Gallery
From a Room in Storkower Strasse.
Until may, 2, 2014
This exhibition presents works by Jacob Hoff made during an extended stay in Berlin. The subtle works revolve around the experience of finding a focus in a strange space. The artist decides to turn his attention to details, in the studio and in the streets. A close-up study of the seemingly uninteresting opens up an awareness that reality is full of signs. The exhibition includes a series of paintings, From a Space, and selections from a series of photographs, Walking Away from Monuments. Of them, the artist writes:
From a Space
You go away. To a strange city where you donâ€™t know anyone. You rent a space in a remote location to be free of loving distractions â€“ from your job, your friends, your family. At last, you have time. You sit there. You let your eyes glide over the walls, the chair, the rickety trestle desk, the window blinds alternating light and shade. You sit in the space, but you are not inside.
You wait. You tap on the wall to test it. You free-associate. You look at what you painted last year. You have coffee with your neighbor. You get drunk alone. You look at the clock. Outside.
Finally, you surrender. Fumbling, you put stretchers together. You start painting: the blinds, the ribs of the radiator, the spot on the rug. Slowly. While bored. You hum along to pop radio. You lose yourself in the curve of the chair leg.
One day you sense, that the door is ajar. Without turning, you keep on painting.
Walking Away from Monuments
I have turned my back on monuments. I decided to go the other way, literally. I wanted to see the city with new eyes, upend hierarchies of the gaze.
To begin with, I visited specific coordinates as points of departure. The privileged Xâ€™s on the city map: statues, squares, buildings. Then I left them behind. I have walked away from war monuments and popular amusements with equal determination. It takes self-discipline to get lost in streets, that are entirely inconspicuous.
Later, it became a method. Shuttering my eyes until I reach a level of disinterest in my surroundings. When I open them again, little things talk to me. I move in a forest of signs. Now I can pick from the branches.
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