All posts tagged: Dr. Molrok

Monumenta: Large Scale Icon Celebrates “The Intelligence Of Many” in Leipzig

Monumenta: Large Scale Icon Celebrates “The Intelligence Of Many” in Leipzig

“Utopia is not dead!,” curator Denis Leo Hegic loves to exclaim. Maybe not, but it is elusive.

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. Viktor Frešo “Angry Boy”. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

You may catch a flash of Utopia here among heady concepts he entertains regarding iconization, scale, the elimination of tastemakers and gatekeepers, urban planning and architecture, art in the streets juxtaposed with art in galleries, or at the thumping of electronic DJs and darting lazers at the sweaty bumping house parties every weekend inside a cozy ex-storehouse for equipment.

The bitter will simply call this reinvigoration of a former metal works factory by Berlin’s Wandelism collective a tool of gentrification for its new real estate owner, but that kind of reductive criticism overlooks the cultural evolution that often is spirited by large multi-tentacled environments such as these.

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. Viktor Frešo “Angry Boy”. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Functioning as a large laboratory of experimentation that has entertained large crowds since late summer, Monumenta fosters thousands of conversations and strategies about art and culture and technology and the shifting geo-political future we will need to be prepared for it. It is almost as if the only preparation that we can hope to depend upon during increasing times of increasing complexity will be collective tribes like these, and ‘the intelligence of many’.

So here’s Jan Kuck melting wax and pouring it into light fixtures which, when turned on, will melt the wax again organically onto a pile of mirrors below – a curious kinectic sculptural installation you may call Wahnsinn, or madness. Kuck can easily mount his work at international art fairs, and he has – but this place affords an unquantifiable jolt of the D.I.Y. energy that powers artist spaces in big cities throughout Europe. Outside in the yard with his canvas leaning against the wall, Berlin’s Dino Richter is fastidious and attentive to detail with his sharp knife slicing through layers of tape, peeling off pieces to produce an intricately tight design evocative of circuit boards and ice cream pops.

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. The Monument-of-Many Installation. Detail. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Hosted on the post-industrial grounds of Pittlerwerke, 36,000 square meters of former machinery factories presents one sixth of that for a wide-ranging exhibition of urban, contemporary, graffiti, installation art, music, performance, talks and workshops. The spaces are generous, even holy in their scale; a conceptual big tent that gives room to a seriously considered eclecticism of artists and artworks that all somehow capture this moment before the abyss.

Here you’ll find one of the original Cologne “Neue Wilde” (Young Wild Ones) who also became known as a painter of the “Mülheimer Freiheit“, Hans Peter Adamski, his large abstractions only meters away from a fire extinguisher triptych by a current united graffiti power on city streets across Europe, the 1UP Crew. You’ll also see Berlin public/street art duo Various & Gould with an empty skin sculpture of Marx and Engels while Berlin art trio Innerfields creates machine guns of papier-mâché.

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. Dr. Molrok. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

The Ghanaian born, Vienna based painter Amoako Boafo brings one of his elegant figures of masculinity to a large canvas while down the hall Señor Schnu reenacts a sculptured scene of police brutality with a teen in a hoody half-submerged underfoot in murky water. Don’t forget the one hundred artist suspended installation of monuments-of-many flanking Viktor Frešo’s naked giant “Angry Boy” who may unhappily remind you of a certain president.

How do you begin to connect the dots here? Perhaps it’s more about opening the spaces between them for yourself.

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. Dr. Molrok. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monumenta is part exhibition and cultural fair; a ‘happening’ of sorts; a surprisingly ego-free environment for making art that you can immediately put on display and have conversations about with an eclectic mix of art fans and peers. The multi-member team of artists and producers and writers and media makers have created a nether space in transition from its industrial past to an inconclusive future, creating the kind of environment where artists are rather liberated from presupposition. It feels like the result of a positively reductive process that strips away artifice and reminds us what the raw creative process is – and where it may go if given room and respect.

Curators Denis Leo Hegic and Jan Fielder created the environment in the moment, on the spot, and with some audacity. They also smartly partnered with a selection of sparkling seers including contemporary gallerist and manager Isabel Bernheimer, visionary ringmaster at Urban Spree Pasqual Feucher, the storied collector Marc Omar, and Berlin Art Society’s Michelle Houston.

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. WENU. Detail. “Divide et Impera”. Detail. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Uneven and happily unfinished, the collection of experiences launches a sense of unified eclecticism; a multi-storied series of Lo and Hi, fine art paintings, installations, sculpture, photography and electronic media that create a collective chorus of possibilities on the cusp of the next crash. In a odd world of flattening hierarchies and spirited inclusionary programming the two principal architects of this future vision suggest a re-ordering that brings the street directly into the cathedral and ivy covered hall.

BSA spoke with Monumenta curators Denis Leo Hegic and Jan Fiedler about some of their preferred ways of seeing art and the thrill of mastering an enormous iconic industrial space for exhibiting artworks from so many disciplines and perspectives.

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. Various & Gould. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Brooklyn Street Art: You spoke in your presentation during the Momenta Talks program about the concept of space and emotion when considering how to mount an exhibition. What part does emotion play in the experience of an art installation?

Jan Fiedler: Emotion is one of the central aspects while being confronted with art, and the perception of the artwork changes with the emotions you are going through while being in contact with said artwork. When you are sad, a painting or sculpture will trigger different feelings than when you are in a happy mood. Also the quality of an artwork really shows, and it may “force” you to feel a certain way.

It is interesting to observe how certain artworks can move people from different cultures, countries and backgrounds in the same way. It really shows that the language of art is universal. Especially the old masters can evoke these, mostly holy, emotions, even in faithless people. If we talk about these paintings, then we have to keep in mind that the eyes they were created for were the main source for evoking religious feeling. The ears were useless in Mass, since the sermon was held in Latin, a language most people did not understand, and the eyes went on a journey, trying to find a foundation for their faith in the art that was displayed in the churches. So they were painted in a certain way, to evoke exactly these feelings.

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. Rocco and his Brohters.“Dezernat 52”. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

These paintings hang in museums today, robbed of their original context and surroundings, but still are powerful to trigger feelings. And that applies to every artwork you want to put on display in an art show. You have to dedicate a certain amount of time to every single piece, feeling the emotional impact it has on you and arrange it in a way that highlights its qualities in the best way. So an art exhibition is in the best case a carefully arranged Orchestra that takes the visitor on an emotional journey.

Brooklyn Street Art: “The Intelligence of Many” is a phrase that was central to the formation and execution of Monumenta. Is this a model for curation that we may see in the future?

Denis Leo Hegic: Yes. It is not only a model of curation, it is a model of cooperation in different fields in a successful modern society. The information, which we have to deal with in every aspect of life, has reached such a great level of complexity, that working TOGETHER in a selfless way and profiting from the intelligence of many individuals involved is the only concept that can bring a true (and important) change.

Even if the world does not appear like that in this moment, it is actually the case that the era of self-centered egomaniacs is over. And that´s the good news.

In terms of curating something which we call “Urban Art”, there is absolutely no other way of doing it. This form of art is rooted within and powered by (urban) communities and the spirit that arrives from them. One can fake this credibility just for a limited time. The intelligence of many is the counter concept to the stupidity of one.

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. Rocco and his Brohters.“Dezernat 52”. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Brooklyn Street Art: Can you talk about the cathedral quality of the initial hall at Monumenta?
Jan Fiedler: The “Church”, as we call the entrance hall of Monumenta, is a nickname that has its origins in the unique architecture which resembles a Basilica – is a very special room, which from a curatorial point of view demands a large amount of attention. This is especially so because it resembles a church, a place where there is only room for one god. We decided to dedicate it to the Monument-of-Many, the visions of one hundred different artists.

But there is a reason why churches and cathedrals have such an effect on the spectator, because they play with scale and the tools of iconization. We used the exact same tools, but not to promote one singular idea, but to present a grumpy baby, the symbol of hope and future, where nobody can be certain how it will turn out if it grows up. This again is one of the aspects of Monumenta; To let go of total control and to give artists the freedom to unfold their creativity.

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. Señor Schnu. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. HNRX “Paradoxism”. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. Play with art. Guillermo S. Quintana on the floor with several artists on the boards. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. Play with art. Detail. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. Les Enfants Terribles. Detail. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. Les Enfants Terribles. Detail. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. Les Enfants Terribles. Detail. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. NASCA. “Cruz”. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. Jan Kuck. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. Jan Kuck. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. Ron Miller. “Gun-Geisha”. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. 1UP Crew. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. Marina Zumi. “View Insight”. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. NeSpoon. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. KNS. “Where Is The Scene?”. This piece wasn’t commissioned but rather illegally painted during the opening days of the exhibition. The organizers of the exhibition decided to keep it in place instead of buffing it. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. SNOW. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many. The organizaers. Standing, from left to right: Niklas Jedowski, Sabrina Markutzyk, Jan Gustav Fiedler, Denis Leo Hegic and on the floor Dorian Mazurek. Leipzig, Germany. September, 2018. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 

Monumenta Leipzig / The Intelligence Of Many is currently open to the general public in Leipzig, Germany. Click HERE for general information, schedules of upcoming events, directions etc…

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BSA Film Friday 06.08.18

BSA Film Friday 06.08.18

bsa-film-friday-JAN-2015

Our weekly focus on the moving image and art in the streets. And other oddities.

Now screening :
1.1st Berlin Mural Fest Wrap Up
2. Pixel Pancho in Papeete. for ONO’U Tahiti Festival 2018. French Polynesia.
3. Christina Angelina in Papeete. for ONO’U Tahiti Festival 2018. French Polynesia.
4. Doug Gillen FWTV – Street Art and Anti-Semitism…discuss..

bsa-film-friday-special-feature

BSA Special Feature: 1st Berlin Mural Fest Wrap Up

Of course Berlin has no shortage of organically grown aerosol artworks around the city so it takes something special like a mural festival started by Die Dixons to make an impact. They have the connection to community and ability to mobilize across walls and art and performance disciplines. After the success of The Haus last year it seemed like anything was possible for the team, and the first time out shows the results in this short aftermovie.

#berlinmuralfest #nackenstarregarantiert #allewändevollzutun #berlinartbang

Props from the organizers to: Akteone, CREN, Jelio Dimitrov Arsek, Erase, case_maclaim, Die Dixons, Dr.Molrok, El Bocho, Elle Street Art, HERAKUT , Icke_art, Innerfields, Insane 51, Isakov, James Bullough, Kera1, Klebebande Berlin, Kobe Eins, Mika Yat Graffiti, Millo, Mr.WOODLAND , MTO (Graffiti / Street-art), MüCke32, Natalia Rak, Notes of Berlin, Nuno Viegas, One Truth Graffiti Street Art, ONUR, WES 21, Size Two, snik, TASSO, TELMO MIEL, Ria Wank, Michael Dyne Mieth, Anne ‘Blondie’ Bengard, Slider.Bandits, Caparso, Bas2, Daniela Uhlig, Ghettostars Crew , Monsta 179, Semor the mad one, Skenar73, Max Roche, Raws, TAPE OVER, Tape That, Tobo

Pixel Pancho in Papeete. for ONO’U Tahiti Festival 2018. French Polynesia.

Here are a couple of quick work-in-progress videos we shot this week on the island of Papeete in French Polynesia while we’re chasing artists with Martha Cooper across 4 islands of Papeete, Raitea, Moorea, and Bora Bora. Here are Pixel Pancho and Christina Angelina.

Christina Angelina in Papeete. for ONO’U Tahiti Festival 2018. French Polynesia.

 

Doug Gillen FWTV – Street Art and Anti-Semitism…discuss…

Is Banksy anti-semitic? The Street Artist has used his work to address social and political causes for almost two decades and this is the first we’ve heard the charge. We’ve seen all sorts of sentiments on the streets – racist, misogynist, homophobic, strains of xenophobia from different angles. But this is Israelis and the Palestinians and an active fight – with a multitude of shadings. Doug Gillen flies directly into the hornets’ nest – all for the love of Street Art.

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Rocking “THE HAUS” : A 5-Floor Berlin Bank is Transformed by Artists

Rocking “THE HAUS” : A 5-Floor Berlin Bank is Transformed by Artists

“Normally we paint advertising – hand-painted advertising, mostly with cans. So we work all over Germany, with a lot of crews, “ says Kimo, a bearded, bald energetic and sharp witted guy who is lighting up a cigarette in this tattered, beige ex-conference room.  That explanation doesn’t prepare you for what you will see in the rooms upstairs.

Size Two. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

The floors are piled with unopened paint buckets and brushes and cans and the walls in this organizing office are covered with scotch-taped project timelines, to-do lists, and floor plans of the old bank. Each former office space is plainly labled with names of German Street Artists or graffiti  crews, some you recognize, others you don’t. More recent Street Art names are next to classic Graff heads, installation  artists mix freely with Optic Artists, photographers, sculptors, even a live moss installation.

Case Maclaim is right next door to Turbokultur with Stohead out in the hall on floor 1.  El Bocho and Emess are in small rooms to either side of 1UP on the 3rd. Herakut in a corner room numbered 506 is right next to Nick Platt and Paul Punk in 505.

1UP Crew. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

What are all these artists, more than 175 of them and almost entirely German, all doing throughout a five-floor bank building in central Berlin on the Kudamm?

You’ll find out in April when the doors open to thousands of graffiti/Street Art/contemporary art fans to tour through THE HAUS, an enthusiastic life-affirming  joyful and pissed-off D.I.Y.-flavored fun-haus of fully realized installations, painting, projections, exhibits, and interventions.

You’ve been to (or at least read about) these last-hurrah urban art installations before – celebrations of artists’ visions that inhabit a building destined to be demolished soon. Possibly because of their ephemeral nature or a lack of serious interest in art-making, often the artworks and their execution are a bit slap-dash and loosely committed.

Not at THE HAUS. You’ll likely be surprised by the conceptual sophistication at times and wowed by technical dexterity, stagecraft, attention to details, and genuinely mind-challenging immersive environments.

Super Bad Boys. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

But this is Berlin after all, an urban art capital where graffiti crews are known for getting way up on impossible walls with foolhardy and militarily precise plans – sometimes implemented with rehearsal and execution under cover of night.

The logistical planning of Street Art and graffiti interventions here often centers around devising a slick and ingeniously resourceful roll-out of the aesthetic attack- some times given as much attention as executing the artwork.

Innerfields. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“We do not curate any of the room concepts,” explains Kimo as he leads you from room to room, sometime removing protective tape over doorways and turning on lights to allow a guest to see inside. “There is no over all concept. It has to be really really nice, but that’s it.”

Okay, there are some challenging themes around violence, graphic sexuality, and the horror of human trafficking. More often they are driven by character, text, and slaughtering with paint and pattern. As with most creative ventures of this size, it is impossible for organizers to know when or if to draw the line on content.

 

Herakut. Process Shot. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

There is also a darkened and completely life-sized realistic portion of a train-yard with a capped train over head, rails below, and cables and ground stones. A companion “white box” installation is said to be somewhere right now inside an underground Berlin train station. It is evident that weeks of preparation went into many of these dioramas and scenes.

“We just called around 50 artists to invite them here to take a look at the building and we told them, ‘If you know guys who have skills like you, just tell them.’ We’re looking for more artists,” Kimo says.

With more than three times that number coming and installing in the HAUS building over the last four months, there are still more artists who are clamoring to get in. “Now we have 100 artists on the waiting list”.

Case Maclaim. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

The existence of this list would sound like bragadoccio coming from another organizer of an event like this, but when you see the calendars, lists of names, video scheduling, website design schedule, team responsibilities, art materials, contracts, even marketing plans printed and thumb-tacked on the walls of the Orga, you know that these three partners have created a supportive art-making environment with a sense of purpose.

“Bolle and Jörni  have been painting for 25 years,” says Kimo of his two partners. The three are members of their own crew called DIE DIXONS. Kimo says he cannot paint. “I tried but I can’t, I don’t have the patience to paint”. Instead he says he has great organizational abilities and love for the art  subculture and the graffiti/Street Art game.

 

Kaleido. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Together the DIE DIXONS also own the professional sign-painting company Xi-Design who originated THE HAUS project, and it is their multiple contacts with real estate, construction, lifestyle brands, paint suppliers, and highly-skilled commercial painters that makes this endeavor a POWER HAUS like few you’ll find.

This show is planned to be destroyed in a few months along with the building for a new project with condos and retail, but the quality here in many cases actually rivals art fairs we have seen in the last few years. Based on the buzz it has it safe to say that by the time the doors open in April, it will already have been declared a success.

Ostap. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Please note: Under the agreement with the organizers we agreed to publish only details of the pieces, so the surprise is not ruined. Some of these are installations in progress along with completed installations.

Tape That. Process Shot. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Tomislav Topic . Thomas Granseuer. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 

Dr. Molrok. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Steffen Seeger. Process shot. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 

Base23. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Vidam. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Telmo & Miel. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Paulo Consentino. Process shot. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 

Anne Bengard. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Arsek . Erase. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Amanda Arrou-Tea. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Go Go Plata. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Honsar. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Insane51. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Popay. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Daniela Uhlig. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 

Felix Rodewaldt. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

DeerBLN. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 

Klebebande. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Mario Mankey. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

One Truth. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Koikate. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Rotkäppchen . Goliath. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Señor Schnu. Process Shot. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Urzula Amen. The Haus. Berlin. March 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

 

We wish to express our sincere thanks to Kimo, Bolle, Jörni and their team for all the time and assistance provided to us for the production of this article. Thank you to Katrin for helping with the artists IDs, and to Lisa Schmidt for her help with information as well.

 

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