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Gallery Weekend Berlin: Shows to See

By Tessa Moldan  |  Berlin, 25 August 2020

Katharina Grosse: It Wasn't Us, Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin (14 June–10 January 2021). Courtesy KÖNIG GALERIE, Berlin, London, Tokyo/Gagosian/Galerie nächst St. Stephan Rosemarie Schwarzwälder, Wien. © Katharina Grosse / VGBild-Kunst, Bonn 2020. Photo: Jens Ziehe.

Gallery Weekend Berlin returns this year between 9 and 13 September 2020 as the leading light of the city's wider art week, which sees exhibitions opening at galleries and institutions alike. Find out what's to offer with this lowdown of shows to see.

Katharina Grosse: It Wasn't Us
Hamburger Bahnhof, Invalidenstraße 50–51, 10557
14 June 2020–10 January 2021

Katharina Grosse's coloured installations spill across Hamburger Bahnhof's Historic Hall for this show-stopping exhibition. 'With my painting, I seek to cause vehement agitation', the artist has explained. 'I want the viewer to be so disturbed—positively or negatively, that they develop the wish to change something.'

Olafur Eliasson, Your sun seen from Mars (2020). Coloured glass, colour-effect filter glass, silver, driftwood. 81 x 352 x 15.5 cm. Courtesy neugerriemschneider.

Olafur Eliasson: Near future living light
Isa Genzken
neugerriemschneider, Linienstraße 155, 10115
12 September–24 October 2020

Continuing her investigations into the legacies of Modernism and Minimalism, neugerriemschneider presents sculpture, collage, and photography by Isa Genzken spanning four decades. Also on view at the gallery are three new projected light installations by Olafur Eliasson that shift viewers' perceptions of time, space, and movement.

Brian Belott, Silent Movie (2020). Cotton batting, colourfast paper, acrylic paint, matte medium, faux fireplaces, brushes and handles. 167.6 x 121.9 cm. Unique. Courtesy the artist and Tanya Leighton, Berlin.

Brian Belott: Circa Skippy
Tanya Leighton, Kurfürstenstraße 25, 10785
9 September–24 October 2020

Brian Belott brings a collection of multimedia works to Tanya Leighton for his first solo exhibition in Germany, Circa Skippy. The New York-based artist has worked on his series of 'Puuuuuuuuuffs' since the 1990s, incorporating everyday objects, like box fans, socks, and items from dollar stores into energetic and textured fusions of material.

Andreas Gursky, Hong Kong Shanghai Bank II (2020). Inkjet print, Diasec. 307 x 205.7 x 6.2 cm (framed). Copyright Andreas Gursky / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn. Courtesy the artist and Sprüth Magers.

Andreas Gursky
Sprüth Magers, Oranienburger Straße 18, 10178
12 September–14 November 2020

Sprüth Magers presents an exhibition of photographs by German photographer Andreas Gursky—his first new body of work in three years. With a retrospective opening at MdbK Leipzig in December, Gursky continues to cast his lens onto ongoing themes of interest, including the built environment and humankind's impact on the natural world.

Nguyen Trinh Thi, Everyday's the Seventies (2018). Single-channel, four-channel sound. 15 min. Courtesy the artist.

Readings from Below
Times Art Center Berlin, Brunnenstraße 9, 10119
10 September–12 December 2020

With works by artists including Christine Sun Kim and Thomas Mader, Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Yuichiro Tamura, and Yau Ching, this exhibition, curated by Ariane Beyne, explores the potentials of archives in the age of digitisation. Coming up against the traditional idea of the archive as solid and timeless, the artists in this exhibition posit archival information as decentralised, temporalised, and multimodal.

Meriem Bennani, Party on the CAPS (2018). Eight-channel video installation, colour, sound. 30 min. Exhibition view: Julia Stoschek Collection, Berlin. Courtesy the artist and C L E A R I N G. Photo: Alwin Lay.

Meriem Bennani: Horizontal Vertigo
Jeremy Shaw: Quantification Trilogy
Julia Stoschek Collection, Leipziger Straße 60, 10117
5 September–29 November 2020

At Berlin's hub of time-based media work, two artists propel viewers into the future. Jeremy Shaw's Quantification Trilogy is a critique on power systems, imagining attempts to return to outmoded belief systems and spiritual states, while Meriem Bennani explores displacement and resilience on a fictional island in the Atlantic, CAPS, where migrants are detained.

Otobong Nkanga, Taste of a Stone (2020). Site-specific installation, boulders, gneiss, granite, iceland lichen, inkjet prints on limestone, marble pebbles, movements, plants. Exhibition view: Otobong Nkanga: There's No Such Thing as Solid Ground, Gropius Bau, Berlin (10 July–13 December 2020). © Otobong Nkanga. Photo: Luca Giradini.

Otobong Nkanga: There's No Such Thing as Solid Ground
Gropius Bau, Niederkirchnerstraße 7, 10963
10 July–13 December 2020

Spanning installation, drawing, and performance, Otobong Nkanga's poetic practice explores the extractivist activities that come in between the body's interconnectedness with the land. Curated by Stephanie Rosenthal with Clara Meister, this exhibition continues Nkanga's long-standing interests, expanded during her 2019 one-year residence at Gropius Bau.

Austin Lee,flowerbear (2020). Foam and fibre reinforced painted resin, steel armature, acrylic. 122 x 150 x 43 cm. Courtesy Peres Projects.

Austin Lee: Aah
Peres Projects, Karl-Marx-Allee 82, 10243
11 September–9 October 2020

Peres Projects presents new paintings and sculptures by American artist Austin Lee, rendered in his signature candy colours. Their effervescent hues riff off the realm of the digital, bringing the theatricality of online images into physical space, laying bare the difference between lived and digital experience.

Richard Hawkins, To Divide Him Vein by Vein (2020). Acrylic on panel, in artist frame. 178.5 x 224 cm. Courtesy Galerie Buchholz.

Vincent Fecteau
11 September–31 October 2020
Richard Hawkins
11 September–2 October 2020
Galerie Buchholz, Fasanenstraße 30, 10719

Wall-mounted sculptures by Vincent Fecteau made up of papier-mâché, studio flotsam, and acrylic paint will be on view for the artist's third exhibition at Galerie Buchholz, accompanied by Richard Hawkins' brightly coloured explorations of American culture, capturing gay cruising bars and exotic hustler bars.

Exhibition view: Tobias Spichtig, Pretty Fine, Contemporary Fine Arts, Berlin (2–26 September 2020). Courtesy the artist and Contemporary Fine Arts, Berlin. Photo: Matthias Kolb.

Tobias Spichtig: Pretty Fine
Contemporary Fine Arts, Grolmanstraße 32/33, 10623
2–26 September 2020

Tobias Spichtig first started his 'ghost' sculptures by soaking clothes leftover from a New Year's Eve party in resin—a practice that led his enigmatic figures to occupy Balenciaga's New York City flagship launched last year. For his first solo exhibition at Contemporary Fine Arts, macabre glamour resides in a new collection of paintings and sculpture.

Michael Müller, Lage der Freiheit (2019/2020). Courtesy Galerie Thomas Schulte.

Michael Müller: Anton in a Bast Skirt
Galerie Thomas Schulte, Charlottenstraße 24, 10117
9 September–31 October 2020

Licks and lashes of colour are applied to sheets of glass in Michael Müller's 'In front and behind the glass' series, which disturb the traditional composition of painting. Müller's painted glass panels are placed onto the canvas, the two materials then hugged by a metal frame, so that their colours appear to be hovering in space.

Ambera Wellmann, Landscape with a Figure of a Woman (2020). Oil on linen. 200 x 200 x 2.5 cm. Unique. Courtesy the artist and Kraupa-Tuskany Zeidler. Photo: Ramiro Chaves.

Ambera Wellmann
Kraupa-Tuskany Zeidler, Kohlfurter Straße 41/43, 10999
10 September–24 October 2020

Canada-born painter Ambera Wellmann presents her first solo exhibition in Germany with Kraupa-Tuskany Zeidler. Interrogating the representation of the female body in art history, Wellmann presents her figures as amorphous and fragmented, refusing any singular reading of their form.

Miriam Cahn, das genaue hinschauen, 18.11+24.12.15 (2019). Oil on canvas. 336 x 290 cm. Courtesy the artist and Meyer Riegger.

Miriam Cahn: ZEIGE!
Meyer Riegger, Schaperstraße 14, 10719
9 September–24 October 2020

Focusing on the body, Miriam Cahn explores the fragility of human experience, spanning themes such as interpersonal relationships, family constellations, and the position of women and minorities in society in a collection of new and recent paintings at Meyer Riegger.

Victor Man, Self Portrait With The Yellow Shadow of Christ (2019). Oil on canvas 46 x 32 cm. Courtesy the artist, Galerie Neu, Berlin and Private Collection, Athens. Photo: Mathias Schormann.

Victor Man: Die Rose ist ohne Warum. Sie blühet weil sie blühet
Galerie Neu, Linienstraße 119, 10115
11 September–31 October 2020

In his deep green and blue-hued paintings, Victor Man's still lifes and portraits are rich containers of memory, in which figures are fixed between past and present; fiction and reality. Resembling old masters, his works were included in MAXXI – National Museum of 21st Century Art's recent exhibition in Rome, which looked at the spiritual through the lens of contemporary art (on the spiritual matter of art, 17 October 2019–28 June 2020).

Clare Woods, If Not Now Then When (2020). Oil on aluminium. 200 x 150 cm. Courtesy the artist and Buchmann Galerie Berlin. Photo: Stuart Whipps

Clare Woods: If Not Now When
Bettina Pousttchi: Vertical Highways
Buchmann Galerie, Charlottenstraße 13, 10969
9 September–31 October 2020

Following the recent closure of her exhibition at the Berlinische Galerie, Bettina Pousttchi presents a series of new sculptures at Buchmann Galerie that render crash barriers in vivid colours, their verticality mimicking the human body. Also on view at the gallery are paintings by Clare Woods created in the lead up to and during an intense period of isolation during lockdown.

Raimund Girke, Weiße Weiten I (1989). Oil on canvas. 200 x 220 cm. © The Estate of Raimund Girke © VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn. Courtesy Kewenig. Photo: Lepkowski Studios, Berlin.

Raimund Girke: Im Rhythmus
KEWENIG, Brüderstraße 10, 10178
11 September–7 November 2020

Raimund Girke was at the forefront of the Analytical Painting movement, through which he sought—alongside other young European artists in the late 1950s—to overcome subjective composition by 'writing' into the picture plane. Girke's dynamic investigations of white paint were indicative of this movement, a collection of which are being shown at KEWENIG, who recently started to work with the estate.

Sanya Kantarovsky, Untitled (2020). Courtesy Capitain Petzel, Berlin. © Sanya Kantarovsky.

Sanya Kantarovsky: Watercolours
Ross Bleckner: Quid pro quo
Capitain Petzel, Karl-Marx-Allee 45, 10178
10 September–7 November 2020

Ross Bleckner's painterly output is directed by 'mutations of consciousness'. 'We don't always think about the same things,' explains the artist, 'so why should we paint about the same things?' This irreverence is paired with a selection of humorous watercolours by Sanya Kantarovsky that imagine liminal spaces and 'scenarios of turmoil'.

Ran Zhang, Chiral (1) (2017–2018). Punched holes on inkjet print of 100 times magnified miniature food setting. 120 x 91 cm. Courtesy the artist and Plan B Cluj, Berlin. Photo: Ran Zhang.

Ran Zhang
Galeria Plan B, Building G, Second Backyard, Potsdamer Straße 77-87, 10785
9 September–24 October 2020

Frame by frame, Ran Zhang photographs objects with a microscopic camera, amassing these into a single image that is interrupted by textures and details. In her 'Resolution of Traits' series, on view at Galeria Plan B, the artist imagines the molecular structures of human motor protein families to reflect on 'how scientific knowledge conditions us to compose mental images.'

Exhibition view: Tainted Love, Confort Moderne, Poitiers (16 December–4 March 2018). Courtesy Confort Moderne.

Emilie Pitoiset: MANIAC
Klemm's, Prinzessinnenstraße 29, 10969
10 September–24 October 2020

In MANIAC, artist and choreographer Emilie Pitoiset continues her long-standing interest in dance marathon contests that originated during the Great Depression era. Spanning photography, installation, and video, Pitoiset imagines the act of dancing to the point of exhaustion as a political act, as a fight against reality or in maintaining faith.

Logo SavvyZaar. © SavvyZaar.

SAVVYZΛΛR presents: Prelude to Raupenimmersattism
SAVVY Contemporary—The Laboratory of Form-Ideas
9–13 September 2020, 2–3 hours per day

SAVVY Contemporary—The Laboratory of Form-Ideas is on the move, and so for this year's Berlin Art Week, the institution brings its programming to radio. SAVVYZΛΛR, the institution's new radio component, will broadcast sonic glimpses of the upcoming project, Raupennimmersattism, The Affluent Society as Consumed Society or The Myth of Endless Production and Consumption, centring on ideas of degrowth and deflation through five days of programming.

Ugo Rondinone, black and green nun (2020). Painted bronze. 300 x 96.2 x 160.5 cm. Courtesy Esther Schipper. Photo: Stefan Altenburger.

Philippe Parreno: Manifestations
Ugo Rondinone: nuns + monks
Esther Schipper, Potsdamer Straße 81e, 10785
11 September–17 October 2020

nuns + monks, Ugo Rondinone's solo exhibition at Esther Schipper, continues the artist's exploration of mass and form through his signature, precariously balanced painted rocks, while Philippe Parreno's Manifestations brings together CGI film, ice, robotic systems, and more to reveal 'lesser existences that need to be amplified and made more real'.

Nina Canell, Craver (2020). Fossilised limestone, rubber bladder, switchboard panel. 33 x 31 x 21 cm. Courtesy the artist and Galerie Barbara Wien. Photo: Robin Watkins.

Nina Canell: Dits Dahs
Barbara Wien, Schöneberger Ufer 65, 10785
9 September–7 November 2020

Swedish artist Nina Canell presents her fourth solo exhibition at Barbara Wien with an exploration of physical matter under the title of Dits Dahs—two different signal durations of Morse code. In the suggestion of gaps and glitches, Canell traverses a range of surprising forms, overcoming dissonance through harmonious compositions.

Anna K.E., Periferal Monday1 (2020). Edition of 5 plus 2AP. 52 sec 6 min. Courtesy Galerie Barbara Thumm.

Anna K.E.: Dolorem Ipsum
Galerie Barbara Thumm, Markgrafenstraße 68, 10969
9 September–10 October 2020

At Galerie Barbara Thumm, Anna K.E., 'engages with the lens and the narcissm', obfuscating it with her saliva to cast a haze upon her image, which will be projected on an LED vertical screen in the gallery. As it is increasingly obscured, Anna K.E. becomes 'both god and ghost within her created world.'—[O]

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