BASEL.- The Museum für Gegenwartskunst
presents Kilian Rüthemann (born 1979 in Bütschwil, St. Gallen, lives and works in Basel) as recipient of the Manor-Kunstpreis Basel 2010 with a solo exhibition Attacca in the museums top floor. Rüthemanns exhibition represents an investigation of the notion of sculpture with an array of architectural interventions. Initially trained as a classical sculptor, Kilian Rüthemanns practice is grounded in his interest in materials. Employing a palette exclusively of concrete, plaster, steel and polyurethane foam, Rüthemanns site specific works not only aptly demonstrate his fascination with the potential of these usually functional materials, but also call attention to the dramatization of their own conception. By enlisting the consultation of a local expert stuccoworker for the complicated installation, for example, the exhibition manifests as a collection of formal and gestural citations from an appropriated language of (construction) technologies. The insinuated but invisible actions involved in the installation (or application) of these works within the exhibition space become central to our understanding of their materiality. Or whereas Yves Kleins Pienture feu claimed an end to the modernist ideals of painting, with Rüthemanns Double Rich wall-drawings, we see his fascinating with the materiality (or rather, immateriality) of fire itself. His works convey a gestural and tactile immediacy. Much less interested in the stasis or monumentality of sculpture than its decay and dissolution, Rüthemanns works create new environments that reveal the essence and unpredictability of the materials themselves. Rüthemanns process-based installations reveal the tension between the material and the ephemeral.
Rüthemann has shown his works in number of solo and group exhibitions, for example Kunsthaus Baselland (2007), the Kunsthalle Basel (2007), and in the 5th Berlin Biennial for Contemporary Art (2008). Together with the Kunsthaus Glarus and the Istituto Svizzero di Roma where Kilian Rüthemann mounted successful solo exhibitions in the past year (Sooner rather than later and Double Rich).