Places in transition. Places under construction. Places that continue. The title of the current exhibition at the Kurt-Kurt is inspired by the city that is slowly turning into a construction site. The space between the construction sites is getting smaller and smaller and the entire urban landscape is gradually turning into one big construction site. Parallel to this development in Berlin, the global context is also changing. Climate change, war, coal are only a small fraction of the new buildings and conversions that need to be designed differently and more sustainably in the very near future. The two artists Susanne Kutter and Martin Kaltwasser address these issues and create expansive installations for the spaces at Kurt-Kurt.
Image above: Susanne Kutter, Der Wald steht schwarz und schweiget
Martin Kaltwasser draws on a series of artistic works from the mid-1990s, Umformer, in which he explored subtle forms of transformation practices, processual artistic works and their equivalents in real life, in urban planning and architecture and in other cultural expressions, as well as their impact on possible social relations, on urban planning processes and urban living realities. He creates a model of an imaginary space in the front room, a simulation that oscillates between built space and a cave created by nature. The expansive, model-like intervention is a 1:1 realisation that can be walked through and experienced. Martin Kaltwasser says of his Umformern: “Umformern is about breaking down rigid material and spiritual forms, or, more gently, reshaping them. It is no longer about establishing definitions and it is unimportant what architecture is or what it (…) has to achieve.” (1996)
Der Wald steht schwarz und schweiget
Susanne Kutter also creates a model world in the back room. At first glance, her installation appears to be a romantic picture – above a city-like landscape, constructed of countless wooden blocks and concrete, a moving sky is silhouetted against the walls and ceiling, an oversized celestial body hangs in the middle of the room, and one hears a young woman singing the widely known “Evening Song” by Matthias Claudius.
But this aesthetically staged world can also quickly tip over into a dystopian vision. The lyrics of the song further underline the ambivalent mood. Susanne Kutter describes it this way: “Nature appears in the song independently and real. The forest stands black and silent’ it says, just as the small pieces of wood stand ‘silent’ – sawn into rectangular blocks, robbed of their liveliness, their individual growth form and lined up in rows. They are only remotely reminiscent of the living, grown trees from which they originally came. Nature has been subordinated to man’s will to shape it, and for all the fascinating beauty and aesthetics that this human order has, it still keeps us at a distance and removed from life.” (Quote, Susanne Kutter, 2022).
Both works interpret the building site, the construction place, as an image and model that dissects and deconstructs the present. At the same time, in the expansive installations, visitors also experience the current situation of the city as a space of possibility that can lead the now into a place of cohabitation between humans and nature through subtle reshaping and rethinking of construction (lat. construere: to build, erect, pile up, accumulate, occupy) and redefining the city.
Opening: Friday, 26. August 2022 from 7:00 p.m.
Exhibition dates: Friday, 26. August until Tuesday 20. September 2022
Opening hours: Saturday, 4 – 7 p.m. and by arrangement
Special: Saturday, 27. August + Sunday, 28. August 2022, 2 – 7 pm on the Moabit site visit
Finissage: Tuesday, 20. September 2022 from 7:00 p.m. with Artist Talk
Kurt – Kurt
Lübecker Str. 13