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Kunsthalle Mannheim exhibits works by Nadine Fecht
Nadine Fecht at the Kunsthalle Mannheim (in the front her art work "Melancholia“, 2015 / 2016, © VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2019. Photo: Kunsthalle Mannheim/ Dietrich Bechtel.


MANNHEIM.- The exhibition “Nadine Fecht. AMOK” is being shown at the Graphic Collection of the Kunsthalle Mannheim until October 13, 2019.

Nadine Fecht operates at the edge of the possible. Whether it be when she draws with a bundle of up to 1,805 ballpoint pens bound together to form a block, or when she writes one and the same sentence such as “I am feeling blue”, or “I am not hysterical” in an endless sequence on a large sheet of paper, thus testing the limits of her physical and psychological endurance. Fecht opens up fields of tension, leaving the visitor in an open dialog, which is less about finding simple answers than enduring the tension between the questions and possible answers.

Her works address socio-political themes such as discipline and self-discipline, social expectations, emancipation and self-appropriation processes. She is as much interested in the social assignment of roles as the development of political movements or the power exercised through language and the processes of resistance which undermine it. As a concept artist she employs traditional media such as drawing, script, i.e. language, sound or video in an often unorthodox fashion.

For the art work “hysteria” Nadine Fecht wrote the sentence “I AM NOT HYSTERICAL” in an endless sequence on five large-format sheets of paper. The vertical columns of words and the phase shift of the handwriting generates a script which becomes increasingly agitated from sheet to sheet, before calming down again on the last sheet. Hysteria is an illness, diagnosed by men and solely attributed to women, which results from a supposed instability coupled with excessive egocentricity. hysteria posits this attribution as a potent mechanism which leaves both social and internal psychological traces behind it.

In “Jedes Kollektiv braucht eine Richtung” (Every Collective Needs a Direction) or “Die Bewegung” (Movement), the artist draws using a block of over 1,805 ballpoint pens. Each pen stands for an individual set in motion as part of a group. In “Jedes Kollektiv braucht eine Richtung” the pens trace long trails following a specific direction, only to pause having lost their orientation, quickly switching in the other direction, swarming in a chaotic state of disquiet, before moving on in a common direction.

The title of the exhibition, AMOK, stands for irritation and the potential simultaneity of complete self-discipline and concerted disinhibition.





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