This double exhibition with works by Claudia Kapp (born 1972) and Jacqueline Doyen (born 1978) is devoted to the two recipients of the 2006 “Prize of the Kunstverein Hannover.” The focus of their works’ representative overview lies upon the results of their two-year residency at the Villa Minimo, the studio house of the Kunstverein Hannover.
In her sculptures, collages, and performances, Jacqueline Doyen examines the sculptural dimension of non-verbal communication whose socially or medially determined significance she successively exposes. She isolates individual protagonists from diverse newspapers and magazines from the context surrounding them, thus directing the viewer’s attention to postures and gestures which reveal clichés and automatisms. From this extensive image archive of seemingly random photographs of politicians and celebrities, Doyen compiles a grammar of gestures that underlies the rhetoric of power in L´éboration de la spontanéité (2007/2008).
The intimate connection of body and image rhetorics, perception and projection is also a crucial feature in her sculptural works. Based on several points of intersection, Doyen’s sculptures circumscribe the negative form of her distilled body images. The ostensibly industrially manufactured objects with soft padding recall medical appliances or strange pieces of sport equipment that exist as autonomous sculptures as well as in the state of their being used. The promise of the object left behind in the exhibition space is first revealed during the performance: for example to bring everyone into the star position of Faye Dunaway at the swimming pool of the Beverly Hills Hotel. While the post modern machinery of star images eliminates its genesis, Doyen renders tangible makes the impressions, stereotypes, and patterns that underlie the formation of personality of any kind.
In her performances, spatial interventions, and videos, Claudia Kapp takes up sceneries of the every-day and has them appear curiously inflated and mysterious. Formulae from Minimal or Concept Art are playfully reinterpreted or alienated when Kapp for example removes all the utensils from the overladen conference room of the “Bremen Central Office for the Realization of Equal Opportunities for Women” and hermetically seals the room between the bank of windows and the entrance with rolls of white paper. With the help of visual tranquilizers and an atmospheric soundtrack, the department store façade conceived by Egon Eiermann on the other side of the street is magically pictured and the feeling of familiarity is shaken.
The almost cinematic work of Ardent Spirits (2008) also veers between a conceptual and an emotionally poetical gesture. Women performers hand the guests black, mouth-blown glasses filled with various types of snaps while reflecting shelves and serving carts cast shimmering light reflections and long shadows into the gallery spaces. The exact dramaturgy produces an atmospheric limbo leading to the productive bewilderment of the visitor. Such familiar rituals like exhibition openings or snaps tastings are underlaid with the irritating “everything is possible” mode; the visitor becomes part of a bizarre and mysterious gathering.