Kang Contemporary opens 'Serendipity: Art (mostly) on Paper'

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Kang Contemporary opens 'Serendipity: Art (mostly) on Paper'
Installation View, Serendipity: Art (mostly) on Paper, Photo: Vemo Hang.

BERLIN.- The exhibition is dedicated to the conditions of emergence and testimonies of serendipity con- centrating primarily on the medium paper. Based on six different perspectives and back- grounds the exhibition examines heterogenous artistic ways of dealing (mostly) with the mate- rial paper against a common production-aesthetic background. In the meantime, the serendip- itous practice proves to be an individual variable of translation, whose spectrum of possible applications is exemplified in the exhibition by techniques such as drawing, printmaking, col- lage, perforation, or paper sculpture. Paper, with its highly plastic appearance, promises to be a productive material for serendipitous excursions.

If science can be described as a system that provokes significant coincidences, serendipity is the mode of epistemic discoveries par excellence - from the positive effect of penicillin on humans to nylon stockings to decalcomania. For our artists the concept of serendipity thus serves as an approach of a creativity that proceeds in a roundabout way. It is precisely the form of open-ended creating that makes complex constructions of meaning based on random impulses possible in the creative process in the sense of a theory of inverse expediency. Es- pecially during digitalization, where the casual snatching of events and facts is gaining in im- portance, an investigation of serendipitous practices from an artistic perspective is particularly interesting regarding their epistemic qualities.

In Serendipity: Art (mostly) on Paper Kang Contemporary pushes the vision of promoting and supporting a diverse group of artists in order to open up a dialog of heterogeneous voices, artistic working methods and perspectives. Kang sees itself as an inclusive platform in which local communities with non-European perspectives, institutionally recognized and underrepre- sented, commercially successful artists as well as ambitious newcomers and "outsiders" come together in the sense of a transgenerational and transcultural discourse.

Vemo Hang's work appears against the backdrop of a life in motion and is shaped by impres- sions she has gathered during periods of her life in China, Japan, the USA, Germany and Switzerland. As an archaeologist, field researcher, analyst and artist, she adopts a variety of positions to reflect on the complexity of organic materiality and landscape. She examines these with a particular interest in environmental influences that inscribe and preserve themselves in things through time. Meanwhile, she seeks ways to capture and translate deep structural pat- terns. By rematerializing origin, history and movement, Hang gives the disparate objects of the world a special expression. In her sculptural paintings, she synthesizes knowledge and sen- suality by physically spatializing and sculpturally embodying virtuality. In them, thoughts are carried by an atmosphere that creates points of reference for a spiritual-spatial search move- ment. The young artist received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting from the Maryland Insti- tute College of Art in 2013 and her Master of Fine Arts from the Zurich University of the Arts in 2019. She also holds an MA in Art History from the Free University of Berlin.

Katrin von Lehmann works at the interface between art and science. In the exhibited works, she develops experimental arrangements from the traditional media of paper folding, perfora- tion and drawing. The colored drawings are partially overlaid with perforated sheets. While the automated line management reveals the artistic recourse to scientifically exact methods, their permanence is contrastingly broken by the fragile perforation. In Kantending 3 the irritation of empirical accuracy is caused by the conditions of an environment beyond her studio, in which the artist operates. Katrin von Lehmann, who lives and works in Berlin and Groß Glienicke, is currently Artist in Residence for sustainability research at FRIAS (Freiburg Institute for Ad- vanced Studies). In spring 2024, she has been invited to exhibit her new artworks on sustain- ability research at the Museum für Neue Kunst Freiburg.

Lisa Glauer's analog like lino prints and milk paintings explore how hegemonic structures shape existences on the physical and mental planes. Her engagement with disciplinary and political borderlands, meanwhile, is informed by scholarly research. According to research by the Scripps Institute, human breast milk in the San Diego/Tijuana region has been determined to be the most contaminated in the world. The artist chose the contaminated human milk as an art material and applies a burning process to it to express the intersectional global, socio- political, and environmental issues. Her project Walking from Frauenklinik to Futurium was funded by the Berlin School of Advanced Studies in Science and Studies in Berlin, where she was selected to participate as Associate until 2019.

Frank Coldewey's architectural structures out of paper, cardboard, matches, sewing thread and other materials, bonded with white acrylic varnish, secure their seemingly improvised state in an extremely fragile manner. Exposed to gravity, they are the more unprotected, but at the same time gain a kind of material stubbornness. The sculptures from his series Stability were created after the artist had observed improvised architecture in politically and socially ne- glected areas in Bombay. They articulate a longing for togetherness and the creation of a community that turns fragile components into a stable unit. Frank Coldewey first completed an apprenticeship as a glass painter before beginning his studies at the Berlin University of the Arts under Prof. Hermann Bachmann.

Tatjana Schülke´s structures and collages are based on regulative, structuring and space- filling ideas. Marked by lightness and a certain fragility they want to be looked at, wondered at, understood intuitively in the sense of a haptic understanding. In her most recent work Under- cover, Schülke explores the painterly qualities of three-dimensional objects, namely the shells of fireworks. In front of double glazing, the cardboard cylinders set into the base of the frame protrude to varying degrees, creating an uneven depth structure. Elements layered into clus- ters evoke images of the growth created by cell division, reminding one of natural processes in both micro- and macro-biological dimensions. The painter, who graduated from the Berlin University of Fine Arts, is also known for her Kunst am Bau projects. Most recently (2022), she created Holla Hoop, a light installation in the Christoph-Földerich-Schule sports hall in Berlin.

MASCHs drawings and sketches follow a strict out of the box perspective. The appear like not influenced by any modern art movements at all but emerge from the free design of surface. In them, an idiosyncratic expression encourages rambling exploration. Using an intuitive mixed technique of watercolor, colored pencil and graphite, he allows figurative abstractions to emerge from explorations rich in color and form. MASCH constantly challenges the texture of the paper by superimposing his applications, which he applies rapidly using various means. In 2015, the film The Grand Budapest Hotel by Wes Anderson received one of 4 Oscars for best production design with MASCHs participation. MASCH was a visiting professor for the UdK Berlin and the Fraunhofer Institute and taught at the Institute of Art and Design, Malta.

In Serendipity: Art (mostly) on Paper the high plasticity of the medium paper corresponds in a special way with the artistic varieties of serendipity. We invite you to join the exhibition and to actively participate in the creation of new narratives within the artworks.

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