Opening: Saturday, September 3 2016, 6:30 p.m.
Guest curator Mathilde de Croix (*1990) is directing her gaze toward Hannover for the second time: after curating exhibitions by artists from Hannover in their studios within the scope of the 87. Herbstausstellung (87th Fall Exhibition) last year, this year she invited a young French artist who admires our city’s most well known artist to date: Kurt Schwitters. Both of de Croix’s projects demonstrate her sensitive attention to a place to which she was invited by the Kunstverein Hannover as a “jeune commissaire” through support provided by the Institut français as well as the City of Hannover’s Innovationsfonds Kunst & Kultur (Innovation Fund Art & culture). At the same time, they highlight two pioneering tendencies that are of importance far away from the globalized world: the serious examination of a particular place and working on site.
»For Éléonore False (born 1987, lives in Paris) the body seems to have no “place, but it is from it that all possible places, real or utopian, emerge and radiate”*, in the words of Michel Foucault. It is from the body that originate what Eléonore False describes as illuminations, those moments when it is necessary to make visible those anchoring points of the world’s organisation. Éléonore False began by collecting images as she scoured the world of books, which she then extended to the physical world. Having switched to black-and-white, enlarged and cut out from their original setting, these fragments are then set in motion by different procedures and techniques: printing, collage, transposal into volume, ceramics and weaving. We can use Schwitters’ description of Merz painting to say that in Éléonore False’s works “the deformation of the materials takes place at the instant that the artist arranges them on the surface […]. It is underlined by fragmentation, torsion and covering by other materials or paint”**. An economy of gesture and action subtends a materiality that has nothing to do with artifice. An essential factor is the scale of the works: it defines the scope of the encounter of the work with the body of the viewer. Ornamentation, motifs, figure and signs: it is up to each one of us to imagine the “utopian body”.
In a movement the inverse of the Open Studio*** exhibitions, the show given by Éléonore False – titled “Open Room, om-thé-tue-eint-agit” – is being held in two rooms of the Kunstverein Hannover. Playing on the ambiguity of the translations of the English word “room”, which in French could refer to pièce, salle and chamber, the artist’s occupation of these two spaces takes as its starting point the semantic slippage from the intimate to the normed space. om-thé-tue-eint-agit – both graphic forms and babble – emphasise its experimental nature. The geographical coincidence between the exhibition and the Merzbau constructed by the artists’ artist, Kurt Schwitters, who was also of fundamental importance to Éléonore False, was another striking element in the lead-up to this exhibition.« (Mathilde de Croix)
*Michel Foucault, Utopian Body, trans. Lucia Allais, Sensorium (ed. Caroline Jones), (Cambridge [MA], MIT Press, 2006).
**Isabelle Ewig, “Kurt Schwitters, Merzzeichnungen and Merzbilder”, in Dada (Paris: Editions du Centre Pompidou, 2005).
***“Open Studio” (September 2015, Hanover) presented those places of work and perception, nomadic or undefined places that are artists’ studios. Inviting the public to visit the studios of six artists living in Hanover, it was possible to experience works in a zero degree of space.