• Pillar Huggers
  • Pillar Huggers
  • Pillar Huggers
  • Pillar Huggers

Pillar Huggers

23 January
18 April, 2015

Curated by: Hilde de Bruijn, Shannon Bool and Hadley+Maxwell

Pillar Huggers

Antonis Pittas, Johann Arens, Jay Tan, Klaus Weber, Christoph Keller, Hilde de Bruijn, Shannon Bool, Hadley+Maxwell

Curated by: Hilde de Bruijn, Shannon Bool and Hadley+Maxwell

 

The Danish experimental artist and thinker Asger Jorn (1914-1973), well-known as one of the driving forces of Cobra (1948-1951) and L’Internationale Situationniste (1957-1972) was a fierce collaborator, always looking for international exchange and discussions, facilitating collective work, magazines, and exhibitions. With great drive and ambition Jorn also wrote numerous books and articles envisioning, from an artistic point of view, ‘the first complete revision of the existing philosophical system’. Jorn believed that art is not derived from an ideology or worldview, but is the direct expression of an attitude towards life, belonging to the fundamental level of work and production. In line with this, Jorn combined in his writings ideas from a wide range of disciplines including politics, physics, economics, philosophy, anthropology, structuralism and art theory. He brought these various interests together via unconventional methods and in a vast variety of forms, in search of a comprehensive theory of art and life.

 

The architectural figure of the pillar-hugger as it appears in Jorn’s 12th Century Stone Sculptures of Scania[1] represents a character whose body has become petrified while attempting to tear down a Cathedral by its vertical supports. A small group of artists have been invited to occupy the position of Pillar Huggers for a one-day visual symposium at Or Gallery Berlin where their work will form the material of their conversation. Transposing Jorn’s definition of a materialist attitude toward making art (as he articulates in the essay “What is Ornament” (1948)) to exhibition-making, the artists are asked to animate the position of the body who, through its transformation into the inorganic, becomes the support for the very same edifice it attempts to destroy. How can we reconcile the compulsion to ornament with a resistance to the compulsion to make an exhibition? Can we avoid the exhibition as monumental decoration by approaching the encounter of and between artwork with the spirit of Jorn’s conception of vandalism and the spontaneous arabesque?

The remnants of this visual symposium will be open to the public at 7:30 pm on January 23, 2015, and will constitute a visual essay that will continue to develop and be launched in the spring.

 


 

[1] The book traces the infiltration of a non-Christian iconography of pillar-huggers, beard-pullers, and double-heads in the decorative programs of churches built in the aftermath of pagan Scania by the recently converted kingdom of Denmark around the year 1000.

 

 

In Kooperation mit der Botschaft von Kanada/In collaboration with the Embassy of Canada.

Location:
Or Gallery Berlin

Oranienstrasse 37, 10999 Berlin

Quergebäude 1 OG

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