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Galerie Kadel Willborn to open branch in Düsseldorf
"Gaza Zebra", 2012. Photogram, Diptych, each part 147 x 420 cm.

DUSSELDORF.- The Karlsruher Galerie Kadel Willborn will open a branch in Düsseldorf on 18 January, 2013, with a presentation of current works by the Canadian artist Shannon Bool. The 160 square metres of the new spaces at Birkenstrasse 3 offer novel possibilities to present contemporary art in a new and exciting environment. Due to its numerous cultural and art institutions, the Rhineland traditionally counts as an important centre of art. In times when most professionals in the field of art are turning to Berlin, Kadel Willborn is oriented towards an active art discourse in the Rhineland and is therefore one of the few galleries that do not favour the capital. The gallerists regard Düsseldorf as an exciting region, in which a natural and inspiring way of dealing with art is revealed in the everyday life of the Rhinelanders, thus providing space for continuous development.

The gallery, which was founded in 2003, has its roots in Karlsruhe and until now participated in numerous art fairs including Art Basel, Liste - The Young Art Fair in Basel, Art Basel Miami Beach, FIAC Paris, Frieze Art Fair, Art Cologne, and Artissima in Turin. Galerie Kadel Willborn continues to appreciate Karlsruhe as a location due to the high quality of its art productions (art academy) and art institutions, as well as its geographical proximity to France and Switzerland. The opening of a new location in the Rhineland is the result of long-standing, intensive relationships to institutions and interested persons in Düsseldorf.

The artists of the gallery, including Shannon Bool, Benedikt Hipp, Matthias Bitzer, Mathilde Rosier, and Natalie Czech, share the focus on re-contextualizing social reality.

Genre-specific boundaries are often transgressed in a single work, leading to a shift in perception which, in turn, not seldom brings the question of present-day reality to the fore.

The gallery’s young program is consolidated by the perspective of an art-historical context. Further development on a high level is pursued by, among others, the American artist Barbara Kasten (*1936) and Helmut Dorner (*1956), professor at the Kunstakademie Karlsruhe. In April the presentation of new works by the group Art&Language, founded in 1968, is also planned. The program is additionally enriched by the Israeli artist Dani Gal, whose works were on view at the 54th Biennale in Venice, among other places, and will now be presented by Kadel Willborn in Düsseldorf in 2013.

The gallery’s program has been extremely well received in the past because its artists – whose international careers for the most part began in the gallery – have had numerous solo shows at renowned exhibition venues. The most recent highlight was the participation of Shannon Bool, Benedikt Hipp, Mathilde Rosier, and Natalie Chech in the show “Made in Germany” at the Sprengel Museum, the kestnergesellschaft and Kunstverein Hannover in 2011. Barbara Kasten’s solo presentation at Kunstverein Nürnberg (2012) or Mathilde Rosier’s solo show at the Camden Arts Centre in London (2011) were also received very positively. The fact that distinguished institutions have acquired numerous works by Shannon Bool and that Natalie Czech, former student of Thomas Ruff at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf, was awarded the Ellen Auerbach Prize confirm our endeavour of opening a new branch.

Shannon Bool, "The Fourth Wall Through The Third Eye", 18 January -23 February 2013
In the gallery’s first exhibition in Düsseldorf, Shannon Bool (*1972, CN), graduate of the Städelschule Frankfurt (2004), presents her new group of works, “The Fourth Wall Through The Third Eye”, a continuation of the preceding presentation at the Sprengel Museum, “Made in Germany”.

The show is based on Shannon Bool’s initiative of a social project in the women’s prison in Berlin-Pankow. The limited view of the world “outside”, the reversal of this limitation to a freedom “inside” and the corresponding formation of the perception of reality “take place” in the new work as a choreography of opposites.

For the women’s prison in Pankow, Shannon Bool conceived an expansive wall painting that she realised with the voluntary assistance of female inmates in almost two year’s of work. With documentary precision, calm tracking shots and just a few cuts, a film shows the perception of the completed wall painting. Without seeing them, one hears the conversations of the inmates, who talk about bureaucratic daily life in prison, tell personal stories, impart their thoughts on pop culture and the local news. The journey between values of high culture and everyday banalities continues in the twenty-part series of painted photographs. Via eBay, Bool bought the most various photographs of beaches during sunset and painted flying mouths on them, in allusion to René Magritte’s surrealistic painting. The lips aren’t random, though, but the pouts of celebrities such as Rihanna, Angelina Jolie, Cameron Diaz, Kirsten Stewart, or Miley Cyrus. Longing and freedom “collaborate” in these images to simultaneously open up the fictive horizon of infinite opportunities to act.

In the actual exhibition space, the new bronze bar sculptures become a physical turning point between being “in front of” or “behind”, “outside” or “inside”. The sculpture connects ceiling and floor, it is a dividing element and focuses one’s view in the space. In its stringency, linearity and presence, it is reminiscent of the aesthetics of Minimal Art. The surface, however, shows the gestural print of grasping hands and thus performs the turn from the contemplative space of art back to the everydayness of subjective wishes charged with fictions.

Shifts in context and transfers of meaning are characteristic of Shannon Bool’s working method. In her sculptures, photograms and paintings on silk, she conceptually falls back on existing paradigms drawn from the history of culture and society and re-contextualizes their visual codes. The process-based change of the view of things, the transformation and shift of forms and values permeate this new group of works which will be on display starting in January.

Shannon Bool’s work has been shown in solo exhibitions, among others, 2006 at Art Basel/ Art Statements in Switzerland, 2010 at CRAC d’Alsace Musée d’Art Moderne, Altkirch/ France and 2011 at the Bonner Kunstverein. Her pieces are included in institutional collections such as the Städtische Galerie im Lenbachhaus Munich, Museum für Moderne Kunst Frankfurt am Main, Bundeskunstsammlung, and the Berlinische Galerie.

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