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Jacqueline Hassink & Immo Klink in new exhibition at Kaune Sudendorf Gallery in Cologne
YSL, London 2002, aus der Serie Mayday at Mayfair. © Jacqueline Hassink, © Immo Klink, Courtesy Kaune, Sudendorf Galerie, Köln

COLOGNE.- Ground floor: a riot. First floor: a fitting room. That‘s the contrast you should have in mind when envisaging the encounter of two photo artists in Cologne‘s Kaune Sudendorf Gallery. In the exhibition, conceived by Immo Klink und Jacqueline Hassink, the two artists present a selection of very special motifs. And even if the subject matter - namely labels, luxury and brand name fetishism - has similar aspects, it is tackled in two very different ways.

The former lawyer, Immo Klink, shows us barricaded up brand name stores like Prada and Gucci & Co. which have braced themselves for indiscriminate display window break-ins, looting and riotous demonstrations by using plywood panels to board themselves up. Jacqueline Hassink‘s photographs portray places where consumerism, merchandising and brand name fetishism have literally reached new levels: she shows us the so-called ‚fitting rooms‘ in the big fashion boutiques, reserved only for the richest of the rich, where you can dress up in clothes that cost well up into the millions. Unavailable for average Joe on the street to wear.

Jacqueline Hassink is no culprit when it comes to glorifying these topics of fashion, brand names and luxury - just as Immo Klink doesn‘t want to stir up concerns regarding globalisation or occupy movements. In her work, Hassink addresses the relationship that luxury products have with their environment. Her famous ‚Car Girls‘ is one such example. The political activist and photographer, Immo Klink, offers us an almost ironic insight into the magic of brands, an enchantment which apparently even their potential, invisible aggressors have difficulties shaking of. Virtually at least, the scene has been set in KS Contemporary - on the first floor, pricey, haute couture ladieswear is tailored to fit, whilst down below on the ground floor, the fight against globalised luxury and economic despotism rages.

Immo Klink was born in Germany in 1972 and has been living in London since 1999. There, Klink did a short stint working in Wolfgang Tilmans‘ studio. His photos were published in numerous arts and weekly magazines. Regarding his artistic projects, Klink has participated in countless group exhibitions, collaborating with artists such as Andreas Gursky, Wolfgang Tillmans, Allan Sekula and Massimo Vitali. His solo exhibitions have been shown, amongst other places, at the Castilla y León Contemporary Art Museum (MUSAC) in Spain, the National Portrait Gallery in London and the Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art in Sunderland.

The conceptual artist and former sculptress Jacqueline Hassink (born 1966) has her roots in the Netherlands but now lives in New York. Her work focuses on the economy‘s influence on social life and its resulting rituals; a topic that‘s formed part of her photographic portfolio since 1993. Her path led her from portraying the desks of the world‘s most powerful business tycoons to international automobile exhibitions, where she developed poses and stagings for her so-called ‚Car Girls‘. ‚Fitting Rooms’ was conceptualised in various haute couture fashion houses between 2003 and 2010. Hassink is a Visiting Professor at Harvard University.

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December 11, 2011

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