Henning Bohl | Cornet of Horse
KÖNIG GALERIE | Dessauerstrasse | 18.11.–17.12.2011
For something that's already been done to be verbalized as something that's already been expressed, the exhibition presents stretcher bars hung onto the floor using school cones; some parked at the car dealership, others in the garage. The cones simply because of “I’m bringing Marie or Josefin or Helena to school”. A general reality that brings these cones into your existence. Linked to the experience of how easily one can be absorbed by it, although simultaneously left with a feeling of complete alienation. It was already phrased as a term: Schultüte. With a friend it happened that this term was used; a social metaphor for a form that had developed itself. And as so often the Form could only be used under this Name. In any case, the cones were bought and stood around the studio for quite some time, to be reflected on what that could mean; For instance a lifetime of learning. ‘Artistic’ biography in general, as well as one’s own. A transitional world in the kitchen, where the sauce already thickens but also threatens to coagulate any moment. A moment in which every bit of additionally acquired knowledge dazes your thinking, where relying on or stumbling over ‘pioneers’ becomes ever more difficult. For every turn towards a helpful ‘reference’ reeks of decaying calculation in matters of taste, exuding pandering social behavior. Puh. First boarding school, military service, three art academies. And 10 years later? The woman at the job center says: “This is no CV. This is what everybody has: awards, international solo exhibitions and galleries in America. We’d like to know what kind of qualifications you’ve acquired in the time since you graduated. We want to know what kind of profession you are suited to”. 20 years Texte zur Kunst, 30 years Mike Kelley’s Educational Complex, 40 years Kreation und Depression. The school cone. Beginning of a life controlled by institutions beyond family, offered by sweets and mindless illustrations. These can create real beauty. At the same time they’re branded with the most stupid polarisations: horses, spiderman, as well as the social: polka dots, Bob the builder. Your freedom in contemporary capitalism.
The works in the exhibition “Cornet of Horse” have already been exhibited in the exhibition of the same title at the Hamburger Kunstverein and at ABC Berlin earlier this year. Due to the size of the exhibition space in Hamburg the works were presented in retrospective context that provided the possibility of comparison, placed the new works in a "history of origins" and consequently took them as already the old ones. For the gallery, the idea was to exhibit the new works as new works, first of all in their own given context. Hence, the sculptures assembled here deploy an exhibition based on self-sampling as to be seen elsewhere as well. They are a repetition of previously made works, the difference being that they are only a few months old and are identical to themselves. (The promise embedded in this idea of a sampled self seems to represent a reaction to the continued pressure of constantly grinding out new work despite a generally stated crisis. As some people have claimed, this would be a time for a pause, reflection, and sorting out less qualified "products". (These People might need a break too). The strategy here is to situate these works in a loop in order to gain time on a second circuit for different and equally important things such as "selzer, garden cake, pumpernickel, apricots, diet yoghurt, spring water, oatmeal cookies and celery".)