Barbara Weiss, Berlin
November 2016 - January 2017
CONTEMPORARY ART DAILY
a few days later ... BREXIT CHIPS BELOW FISH ARE ROTTENING accurately
pencil drawings , 11 x 14 inches
POPER TEA IS THEFT / PROPERTY, 2011 /2016
porcelain and tea
PROPER TEA IS THEFT / BREXITPERTY / TRUMPERTY, 2016
pencil and ball pen on paper,
24 x 32 cm / 9,4" x 12.6" (360 g/m2 / 170 lbs paper)
The US election with Donald Trump were a game changer resulting in some works recycling his main mantra: "Making America Great Again" (as if it ever wasn't or was.. think slavery think....)
MAKE ... GREAT AGAIN, 2016
pencil drawings , 11 x 14 inches
"HAUNTED HOUSES" Vacant buildings on Third Avenue between 99th and 120th street
16 mm, color film
see the film here (contact me for password)
video stills below
see more about this 2 screen video (16mm film transfered to digital) here
EL MUNDO - A CLASSICAL MUSIC CONCERT AT EL MUNDO, FORMER EAGLE THEATER, SPANISH HARLEM, NYC
VIDEO : See a 7 min excerpt (original 55 min)
more info here
text wiitten on this piece by Rainer Ganahl
PRESS RELEASE --- not edited
The gallery is pleased to present the first exhibition by New York based Austrian/ American Rainer Ganahl in Berlin.
For about 20 years Ganahl has been living in Harlem and is aware of the gentrification process this city is constantly confronted with where most likely everybody is playing an active role in it. "HAUNTED HOUSES" Vacant buildings on Third Avenue between 99th and 120th street” consists of two 16mm color films that the artist shot in 2012 from the back platform of a pick up truck that ran about 20 blocks without stopping red lights on the given stretch of a massively underdeveloped avenue in what is referred to as Spanish Harlem near where the artist himself lives. Third Avenue between 99th and 120th street has not seen much change since the 1970s and houses are not only boarded up but even 'bricked up' for many decades. The reasons are complex but real estate speculations, mismanagement and general distrust in the neighborhood are overwhelmingly to blame, something that is now changing due to changes in zoning and the general acceptance of Harlem as a normal if not even trendy place. 'Haunted houses" refers to vacant buildings in Spanish Harlem as mentioned in a New York Times article by a housing advocate. According to this article "one of four low-rise residential buildings on avenues or major cross streets in East Harlem had open stores but sealed-up residential floors." This results in thousands of lost housing unites, lost residents and lost revenues for the neighborhood. Thus, East Harlem suffers from a sense of normalcy and a lack of residential vitality. From an aesthetic point of view this inaction offers the beautiful spectacle of a time capsule and caters to all the negative prejudices this neighborhood has suffered so much from. From an formalist point of view it is a beautiful cascade of images that are interrupted by the given split camera projection set up and thus rendering this architecture interesting and very much alive.
On the above mentioned celluloid, we also can see El Mundo a 99 cent shop that served as the location for the second film. I had patronized El Mundo, ALL BRAND NAME, for toilet paper, laundry detergents, batteries, light bulbs, wrapping tapes and other stuff sold on Third Avenue defined by discount shops for low income areas. With increased rents and a changing demographics these places are about to disappear in Manhattan. The building was a former multi-purpose theater and is around since the beginning of the last century when the neighborhood was predominantly Italian, German and Jewish. The discount shot was so opulent that all theatrical features disappeared or were hardly visible. Only weeks before the shop was closed down and the building renovated the artist frantically organized a magical musical evening including bel canto. The mostly Juilliard performers and the public squeezed between stuff on sale and 3 for 1 items was filmed with various cameras and rendered into a 2 screen projection entitled EL MUNDO - A CLASSICAL MUSIC CONCERT AT EL MUNDO, FORMER EAGLE THEATER, SPANISH HARLEM, NYC.
Since 2008 the artist has worked on a series entitled Credit Crunch and produced timely comments on economic mismanagement and crisis that mix food, text, obscene graphics and porcelain into remarkable satire for entertaining evenings and smelly after lives with pig heads and other perishables rotten away. For the Berlin exhibition the artists presents a fish and chips version of the BREXIT. Some still relevant other porcelain sculptures will be newly arranged including “Proper Tea is Theft,” “EURO - as Krautkopf - and “Quantatitive Easing” – flooding the markets with newly printed money. All these works are part of Rainer Ganahl “Manhattan Marxism” projects.
press release, from the gallery
November 19, 2016 – January 7, 2017
Opening Friday, November 18, 6 – 9 pm
Gallery hours, Tue–Sat, 11 am – 6 pm
For his first exhibition at Galerie Barbara Weiss, the New York-based artist Rainer Ganahl (*1961 in Bludenz, Austria) presents two video installations and two tableaus, all related to his ongoing series Manhattan Marxism.
The artist comments on Manhattan Marxism:
Needless to say there is a contradiction at hand since Manhattan is the home of Wall Street, the biggest machine of capitalism throughout the 20th century and still one of the biggest and the most important in the world. But this little island is not only home to many high-wealth individuals – including some of the richest people in the world – but also to many poor people and a neighborhood statistically still belonging to the most underprivileged areas in the United States.
Hence, Manhattan in conjunction with Marxism could easily be understood as radical chic, some kind of provocation if not outright cynicism, but I do not intend it as such. Not only do I myself live in Manhattan – in the area of Spanish Harlem – but also do many theoreticians who read and study Marx’s texts that are still taught at Manhattan universities.
I am interested in Karl Marx as a theoretician and a metaphor for his theoretical analysis about how people interact materially and socially thus creating an economic system that gives us work, value, profits, losses, crisis, debts and differences. He says work is the major force for people to deal with the world, to satisfy their needs and to create and shape their – mostly instrumental – thinking. Work for Marx is a basic category that takes on new shapes in whatever developmental phase the individual or society finds itself. It is crucial to sustain life and create our understanding of the world and each other. I would go as far as to say that in a society where basic needs like food, clothing, health and security are nearly all guaranteed by the state without much effort, even consumption, distraction, shopping and wasting is some kind of lying just idle is work creating an overall productive effect.
Marx was also an amazing analyst of the products human- and machine-work produces. Already in the first part of the 19th century he speaks about the fetish character of products and goods, something that is the dominating and driving force of shopping and accumulating stuff and services today. His materialism explains the world from the bottom up and unlike idealists who start with big master gods, big terms and concepts and put the idea of something ahead of that something, for Marx survival comes first which then makes humans make things to become who they are and what they are.
Marx represents for a large part of the left leaning population – to which I count myself – social justice and hope. On the right leaning spectrum, he is blamed for the disasters and brutal repressions 20th century forms of communism produced with all its terror and inefficient economical systems. Even if I am fascinated by Marx’s materialist philosophy and his very influential understanding of economical and social processes of his time including his fight against idealism and any kind of god-business, I am not a Marxist the way it was understood in the 20th century where such a sentence and declaration could cost or save your head literally or metaphorically. Saying all this, I have to point out all the misery, wars and murders that were committed partially under his banner, his ideology, his name – no matter how innocent the mostly London-based writer was or wasn’t.
Through this lens, the artist observes his neighborhood in two video installations; the two-channel video installation El Mundo - a classical music concert, 2013, documents a performance staged by the artist in a discount department store called “El Mundo” in East Harlem, originally built as a grand cinema theater.
Between metal shelves stacked with cheap products and signs screaming “Lost our lease — everything on sale!!!” and “You pay less than we paid!!!” musicians perform works by Bizet, Schubert and Puccini. Shortly after the performance the shop was closed down and the building renovated, like many of this discount shops for low-income areas. With increased rents and changing demographics these places are about to disappear.
Haunted Houses - vacant building on Third Avenue between 99th and 120th street, 2012, consists of two 16mm color films the artist shot in 2012 from the back platform of a pick up truck between 99th and 120th street.
The video refers to the vacant buildings in Spanish Harlem, a area Ganahl himself has been living for about 20 years, where houses had been empty and bricked up due to real estate speculations, mismanagement and general distrust in the neighborhood for many decades. That is now changing due to a gentrification process the city is constantly confronted with. At one point, also the building of El Mundo enters the frame.
The third part of the exhibition consists of a so-called Credit Crunch. Since 2008, the artist has worked on this series that combines comments on economic mismanagement and crisis with food, obscene graphics and porcelain into nature morte. For the Berlin exhibition the artists presents a fish and chips version of the BREXIT.
Recent solo exhibitions of Rainer Ganahl include Artists - Recent Photographs from My S/L Series, Kai Matsumiya, New York (2015), Manhattan Marxism, Vleeshall, Middelburg (2014); Comme de Marxist, White Columns, New York (2013); Languages of Emigration, Alex Zachary, New York (2010); and Dadalenin, MAK, Vienna.
A publication on Manhattan Marxism is published by Sternberg Press in 2017.
TRUMP CHANGED A LOT.. as yoiu can see.. above... the press release was written before... the election.
so it s not really accurate, or at least, not complete
i was adding new works while installing in the immediate aftermath of the election.
here some artist friends who visited the show i wanted to "SELFIE" WITH MY TRUMPUTIN...
-- >remember the TRUMP selfie - his portrait:
In 2007, Donald Trump spent $20,000 that belonged to his charity — the Donald J. Trump Foundation — to buy a six-foot-tall portrait
of himself during a fundraiser auction at his Mar-a-Lago Club in Florida.....
Washington Postl Trump bought a 6-foot-tall portrait of himself with charity money. )
TRUMPUTIN selfie with Karl Homsqvist
TRUMPUTIN selfie with Saadane Afif
TRUMPUTIN selfie with David Adamo
TRUMPUTIN selfie with Pedro Wirtz
TRUMPUTIN selfie with Thomas Locher
TRUMPUTIN selfie with Boaz Levin
TRUMPUTIN selfie with Heike-Karin Föll
n the FISH & CHIPS.. place run by people TRUMP NOIR PUTIN would not wanna see cross teh US border !!
here more TRUMPUTIN 2016 / MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN, 2016, penicl drawings to benefit my TRUMPUTIN FOUNDATION owned by my blind-trustfund cat RILKE
type face / font : Wallau, created 1930 by Rudolf Koch, who was known for his nationalist tendencies - though he died already in 1935 ie. before Naziism was in full gear. WIKIPEDIA has
the followoing comment on him which resonnates with the current president elect:
"Known also for his nationalistic ideology, he wrote in Der Deutsche, "Even as a boy I wanted to become a proper real German. I hated anything that was foreign, and even as I was growing up I felt this was a sign of true loyalty.""
TRUMPUTIN, 2016, 1, 2016
pencil drawing, 11 x 14,
MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN, 2016, 1, 2016
pencil drawing, 11 x 14,
CONTEMPORARY ART DAILY