Tying in with DC Open, Sies + Höke is pleased to present Berlin-based artist Claudia Wieser’s (*1973) second solo show at the gallery.
Claudia Wieser’s mirror, copper and ceramic works, her wood sculptures and drawings are marked by an abstraction that is not cool and objective, but rather to be regarded as humane, warm. Her materials and techniques, some of which are borrowed from the field of arts and crafts, but which are also reminiscent of Beuys’ theory of materials (gold and copper as conductive, energising elements), attest to the tactile engagement of the artist with the object. Through various procedures, different layers and techniques, and by constantly revising and editing, Wieser breathes “life” into her objects. The exhibition’s title, “even in closed cabinets must be real things”, quotes film director Christian Petzold, who points out that, on a film set, even invisible objects help to create an aura of authenticity. Ansems Franke describes a similar phenomenon in the context of his exhibition “Animism” at Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin, 2012:
The most radical antithesis of modern Western worldview, the dualistic conception of which was based on a categorical separation of subject and object, is found in Animism. (…) Animism is a counterpart to the “disenchanted”, objectified, reified world of modernity. From this perspective, it stands for a world of magical transformations, in which Modernity’s borderlines and principles were allegedly ignored. (…) When it comes to art, animation is a well known effect, suggesting life and vitality, particularly through movement, but sculptures too can elicit certain images, especially when they seem to respond to the viewer’s eyes.
This spirit of “enlivening” objects meets with Claudia Wieser’s concerns for her artistic production.
For the current exhibition Wieser designs a large-scale flat geometric wall piece made of glazed ceramic tiles. In the foreground is positioned a group of tall turned wood columns whose varied forms and colours are individually conceived and which are each accompanied by a customised plinth: some are varnished in monochrome colours, some are covered in slabs of copper, and some are covered with screen printed motifs. Just like a group of people, every sculpture seems to have been attributed a unique “personality”. Also on view are two relief wall panels made from kaleidoscopically arranged copper, mirror and metal plates, whose geometric elements pose a “challenge to the visual perception of the viewer” (Wieser) while distorting significantly the differences between the actual space and the space perceived through the work. The shapes and themes of the sculptural works are repeated in two-dimensional pieces such as a series of large coloured pencil and gold leaf drawings on coloured cardboard, and a series of glazed ceramic paintings that look like miniatures of Wieser’s larger site specific wall installations.
Common to all the works are minimal abstract ornaments that turn into concentrated compositions. Even the simplest geomentric interventions appear to have a liberating, almost transcendental effect on Wieser, reminding the viewer that relating art and spirituality to a scientific age remains as relevant today as it did in the early 20th century.
Claudia Wieser was born in Freilassing, Germany in 1973 and lives in Berlin. Her recent solo exhibitions include Galleria S.A.L.E.S, Rome (2012); Galerie Ben Kaufmann, Berlin (2011); The Drawing Center, New York (2010); Schauort, Zurich (2010); Galerie Eva Winkeler, Frankfurt (2009) and Kunstverein Oldenburg, with Bernd Ribbeck (2009). Recent group shows include Asche und Gold, Marta Herford / Museum Schloss Moyland (2012); HotSpot Berlin, Gerog Kolbe Museum Berlin (2011); Kosmos Rudolf Steiner, Kunstmuseum Stuttgart / Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg (2011); Dwelling, Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York (2011) and Intensif-Station, 26 Künstlerräume im K21, K21 Kunstsammlungen Nordrhein-Westfalen, Düsseldorf (2010).