The perception of time and the linearity of our being are core themes in the work of Alicja Kwade. With the help of self-developed systems of signs and symbols, the artist attempts to unfold complex structures in order to make them visually perceptible. In works such as CASUAL EMERGENCE, 24 STUNDEN (ZeitZirkel) and 2 DAYS 23 HOURS she finds new parameters for measuring time. The clock hands she uses are merciless, unmistakable indicators of passing minutes and hours. In Alicja Kwade's work, they are markers for specific periods of time. Sometimes in the form of Decartes' logarithmic spiral, sometimes in the form of a circle, fixed sections between the hands create a temporal frame of reference, visually mapping a few hours, a day, or even a month. The circle as an infinite object and perfect form is a deliberate choice: symbolically mapping the linear infinity of time as well as the ever-repeating cycles of how we keep track of it.
Her sculptural works continue this exploration in the three-dimensional space. URKNALL refers to the actual source of our universe and the beginning of time, while HEMMUNGSLOSER WIDERSTAND seems to even suspend physical laws. Like a prism, the mirror creates a seemingly infinite space. As viewers move around the sculpture and repeatedly change their perspective, they must continuously question their own perception. Finally, OOO (Observed Objects Opportunities) refers to Edna St. Vincent Millay's poem FIRST FIG, which begins with the words MY CANDLDE BURNS AT BOTH ENDS, thus addressing the perception of our own mortality.
ALICJA KWADE (*1979, Katowice, Poland) lives and works in Berlin.
Alicja Kwade's work investigates and questions the structures of our reality and society and reflects on our perceptual habits in our everyday life. Her diverse practice is based around concepts of space, time, science and philosophy, takes shape in sculptural objects, public installations, video and even photography.
In 2019, Kwade has been selected for the Roof Garden Commission for the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. She participated in the 57th Venice Biennale Viva Arte Viva curated by Christine Macel in 2017 and in the Setouchi Triennale (2019) and the 3rd Aros Triennale The Garden - End of Times; Beginning of Times, #3 The Future in Aarhus. Recent exhibitions include solo shows at Langen Foundation in Neuss (2020), MIT List Visual Arts Centre, Boston (2019), Espoo Museum of Modern Art, Helsinki (2018), Kunsthal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen (2018), Haus Konstruktiv, Zürich (2018), YUZ Museum, Shanghai (2018), Whitechapel Gallery, London (2016–2017), Kunsthalle Schirn in Frankfurt/Main (2015), Hamburger Bahnhof - Museum für Gegenwart, Berlin (2008). In 2015–2016, Public Art Fund commissioned Against the Run, an installation in New York's Central Park.
Press release courtesy KÖNIG GALERIE.
17 - 24 June 2021
11am - 7pm