Trained as an architect, the Croatian-born artist Dora Budor regards buildings and institutions as tectonic, infra-structural, and gendered systems. Against the aesthetic pursuit of making buildings, she commits to a politics of selectively taking them apart. In Continent, Budor introduces a crisis to Peter Zumthors building, probing its physical intactness through a series of interventions that foreground concealed operations, force external structures inwards, and make the invisible resonant.
One meter from Kunsthaus Bregenz
s northeastern facade, a manhole leads to an underground collector duct that encircles the foundations of the entire building. Its so-called diaphragm walls extend vertically into the soil, mirroring the height of the above-ground structure. Their function is to prevent the collapse of surrounding buildings and control the seepage of groundwater from the nearby Pfänder mountain and Lake Constance.
On the first of KUBs three floors, Budor confines the space upon itself. Latex casts of the underground diaphragm walls stand against the ones of the gallery, closing the entrances. Conservation latex has skinned the sub-terranean surface, removing years of sediment and deposits. The tripartite work Kollektorgang (I XIV), (XV XXIV), (XXV XXIX), all 2021, measures 29 meters in total mirroring the width and length of the excavation pit that hosts the foundations.
In a continuation of recent works conceived metabolically, the institution digests its own substratum. The materials, from which the works on display were produced, originate from the site of exhibition (Bregenz) or production (Berlin): shredded office paperwork forming the structural mass of Kollektorgang, coffee waste from the KUB Café Bar that is ossified into Pucks (bagarreurs), 2021, or a rental bicycle in Something To Remind Me, 2021. They solidify, melt, or harden into different forms and meanings, perversely following the cannibalistic inclination of capital assuring its future. In the space, they seek to subvert and decenter the usual hierarchy of seeing, furnishing a different mode of attention and time.
The building is ventilated through the twenty-eight kilometers of conduits cast into the walls. Termites, 2022, are remote controlled sex toys vibrating within the air ducts. The air carries their reverberations through the thin slits around the perimeter of the space into the gallery. Circulation is made a medium in its most sublimated form, the air we inhale.
Dora Budor (* 1984, Zagreb) is an artist and writer who lives and works in New York.
Solo exhibitions at Kunsthaus Bregenz and Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art (GAMeC), Bergamo, are planned for 2022. Her most recent solo exhibitions were Autoreduction at Progetto, Lecce (2021), I am Gong at Kunsthalle Basel (2019), Benedick, or Else at 80WSE, New York (2018), Ephemerol at Ramiken Crucible, New York (2016), and Spring at Swiss Institute, New York (2015).
Her work has been presented in numerous group exhibitions, including at Palazzo delle Esposizioni, Rome (2021), Migros Museum, Zurich (2021), Schinkel Pavillon, Berlin (2021), Kunst Museum Winterthur (2021), Museum of Modern Art Warsaw (2020), MO.CO Panacée, Montpellier (2020, 2018), Kunstverein Nürnberg (2019), Kunsthaus Pasquart, Biel (2018), Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebæk (2017), Palais de Tokyo, Paris (2017), chi K11 Art Museum, Shanghai (2017), Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (2016), Swiss Institute, New York (2016), Museum Fridericianum, Kassel (2015), and Künstlerhaus, Graz (2015). She participated at the Oxygen Biennial, Tbilisi (2021), the 58th October Salon, Belgrade Biennale (2021), 2nd Riga International Biennial of Contemporary Art (2020), Geneva Biennale: Sculpture Garden (2020), 16th Istanbul Biennial (2019), 13th Baltic Triennial (2018), Vienna Biennale (2017), and 9th Berlin Biennale (2016).
In 2022, Budor will participate in 59th Venice Biennale: The Milk of Dreams.
Budor was a recipient of the Rema Hort Mann Foundations Emerging Artist Prize in 2014 and Pollock Krasner Foundation Grant in 2018. In 2019, she was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in Fine Arts.