Kuandu Museum of Fine Arts

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Kuandu Museum of Fine Arts
A YARD OF INKLINGS Solo Exhibition By REICHRICHTER
Date
2020-07-17 ~ 2020-08-23
A YARD OF INKLINGS (German: Ein Hof von Ahnungen) explores contemporary forms of distance and human dwelling. The spatial and cultural context from which the works source their material extends from the Lower Rhine region to Cologne, California, Taiwan, and Shanghai. The concept of human habitation and the exploration of its disruption in the era of the commodification of elementary human sources of meaning is a key theme in the work of REICHRICHTER. During their artistic expeditions over the last five years, they have been able to study and work out at both the marketing forces as well as their anthropological counter-forces of ›living‹. The German term ›wohnen‹ (living) converges the concurrent meanings of ›to live‹, ›to inhabit‹ and ›to get accustomed‹. The radically trans-national nature of this artistic field also requires an equally radical international exhibition practice for REICHRICHTER's work.
 
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» ohne mich (without me) « is a video installation with an explicit reference to its respective location. Parts of the video and audio track are recorded in the exhibition space and inserted into an existing composition of video and audio material. The viewer looks through a ›peephole‹ in a box on the screen of a computer monitor. In the course of the video loop, he/she suddenly becomes aware of him/herself in the box he/she is looking into (made possible by live video technology).
 
The installation plays a game of distortion with the viewer and his surrounding space. As in a feverish dream, the doubled spatial and sound levels appear as abstractions from the original space, which push into each other and overlap.
By Maria Wildeis, Düsseldorf
 
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» i am in the rear room without me « eliminates such an original and tangible space and manifests its own space of light and sound. The digital sound composition of sound artist Betty Apple interweaves melodic and rhythmic sequences with spatial sounds from different sites. Her track fills the undefined space of darkness and light. The visitor takes a seat on the sofa, and for once does not look at a screen, but in the opposite direction straight into the lens of the projector which throws a motionless white rectangular figure onto the wall behind the sofa. The fine mist in the room turns the beam of light into a shimmering corridor that surrounds the heads of the audience.
 
» i am in the rear room without me « is a work located in the last corner behind all the prestigious showrooms. It exists in an intermediate dimension, a space behind the space; a simulacrum constructed from walls of light with a space of sound. Where sound, video, and film have the potential to combine different levels of time and space [...], they still remain in a conceptual, phenomenal realm. Thus » ohne mich (without me) « and » i am in the rear room without me « could also be understood as a metaphor for the distance between the pictorial spaces of media reproduction and their original, as well as between the perceiver and his or her environment. Like the world that is no longer manifest (Latin: manus = hand), no longer palpable by hands. 
By Maria Wildeis, Düsseldorf
 
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The exhibition presents works on distance. Distance between the technical image and the analogue world, distance between people through segregation, social status and the homogenization of urban spaces. Today, as this text is written, the topic takes on a new, existential dimension. Distance bears a dialectical relationship to proximity. Thus, it is also about the tension between eye and hand, between the longings of the mind and the needs of the body.
 
In the time of the so-called social distance, we suddenly spend our entire everyday life at home. What was left of this home, when its intimacy is under constant attack by the digital image, when children spend more time playing in day-care centres, when the office is the place of the everyday life, when helpers take care of the domestic providing, feeding and maintaining? What about the dwelling house as the most fundamental cell of the urban fabric itself? Has it been left untouched as a place of retreat? Is it still alive or does the intact house only exist in fairy tales?
 
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» Gelände / Geviert / II (terrain / square / II) « can be read as a report on the situation of the human house in the 21st century. A 1:20 scale model made of dark archive cardboard shows the current commodity named ›Verdi‹ of one of the largest American real estate companies which has been producing and marketing the dream of perfect living in the barren landscape of Southern California since the 1960s. The floor plan and dimensions of the model were derived from the corporation's online marketing portal, which offers 360° virtual tours of ›Verdi‹. The model contains a mini-monitor that corresponds to the location of the ›home cinema‹ in the villa’s living room. On this mini-monitor, the ego perspective of a virtual tour through the house runs on this reduced-size screen. This single-shot sequence is accompanied by subtle, sometimes uncanny electronic sounds mixed with references from pop, advertising slogans, video games, a composition in collaboration with sound artist ai.disco from Düsseldorf.
 
Part of the installation is » Looking for a Fireplace «. Four objects with the dimensions 30×30cm (German standard format of a floor tile) are lined up:  1) The photographed photograph » 2892 Kelvin Av « by Lewis Baltz from his series » New Industrial Parks «, which he took in 1974 in Orange County as a reaction to the structural and urban transformations there. 2) A marble floor tile with a drawing of a rectangle made by a trace of fire. 3) The fine art print of a screenshot of the architectural rendering of ›Verdi‹ as marketed on the developer’s homepage. 4) A geometric construction drawing of the eight wind directions including the compass orientation for the construction of a new city, reconstructed from instructions by Marcus Vitruvius Pollio (Roman master builder, pioneer of architecture, ~20 BC) from his book » De architectura «, published as » Ten Books on Architecture « with the original quotation (English translation by Morris Morgan, 1914).
 
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Office Towers originates from the ontological antipode of the living house in the pendulum movement of the sedentary human being between home and work. In the 1960/70s the first mirror-glass façades of office cathedrals grew in the sunlight of Southern California. As an epitome of hyper-modern life, the ›curtain wall‹ spread across the globe, intending to be transparent but effectively cutting through and isolating social space.
By Daniel Paul, Los Angeles
 
While in the video of » Office Towers «, the camera travels through new paths at this prototype of a ›non-place‹ and shows small actions and movements of birds, watercourses, smoking, pausing and passing by, the two textual perspectives of the external visitor and the internal user merge, and the limits of mental processes and reflections elude a clear assignment of the two sources: the artist's thought protocols after the exploratory performance on-site (the headquarter of the real estate company selling ›Verdi‹) and the recorded conversation with a local employee, who has his desk behind the mirror glass façade.
 
» Office Towers « goes together with the work on paper » bits «. From the numbered 1-mile grid of the official maps of Orange County, four grid squares were cut out from the 1965 and 1975 map and inserted into a sheet of graph paper. In grid square No. 8 lies the new development area, where Lewis Baltz took most of the photographs of » New Industrial Parks «; No. 49 and No. 88 are locations for the series of photographs called » Coming from Orange County «.
 
REICHRICHTER is a woman and a man.
 
*The works n°2 - n°6 are part of the comprehensive installation » Coming from Orange County «, which was realized with the support of a work grant by the Lewis Baltz Research Fund, Paris/Los Angeles/Cologne.