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23 Sep 2009

Kuenstlerhaus Schloss Balmoral proudly presents: 'TrAIN to Bad Ems' in Berlin

© Sutapa Biswas, not invisible/nicht unsichtbar, 2009
installation, mixed media

TrAIN to Bad Ems


25th of September 2009

The exhibition runs from 25th of September until 31st of October 2009

Opening hours:
Tuesday to Saturday, 2-7 p.m.

0049 30 9018-33453
0049 30 9018-33457

Turmstr. 75
10551 Berlin

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Under the aegis of the Summer of Culture Rhineland-Palatinate 2009 Cool Britannia and in partnership with the University of the Arts London, the Kuenstlerhaus Schloss Balmoral is carrying out the processual project TrAIN to Bad Ems. The project began during the artists’ visit to Bad Ems, was further developed over the summer, and is now concluding with an exhibition in the Kunstverein Tiergarten | Galerie Nord in Berlin.

“TrAIN” has a double meaning here: First, the title plays with the idea of traveling, of discovering a place, and of moving on and thereby creates a connection with the heyday of Bad Ems when spa guests came from all over the world. “TrAIN” also stands for the program of the Research Centre for Transnational Art, Identity and Nation, of which the various academies in the association of the University of the Arts London are members.
The perception of London’s identity as the metropolis of the British Empire has shifted over the last few decades. In former times, what was primarily seen was Britain’s and its capital’s great cultural influence in its empire spread across the continents. As colonialism receded and the “big brother’s” guilty conscience toward the nations it long regarded as subjects grew, people’s eyes opened for everything Britain and London in particular owe to the peoples of the Commonwealth of Nations.

The artists in this exhibition, coming from all over the world, represent this new British society. With the various intellectual food for thought that they brought from their home countries, they contribute to the diversity of modern Britain.

While Sutapa Biswas tries to direct the observer’s attention to shifts in temporal perception and the mediation of communication, Maria Laet follows the traces of time and points out its transience. Young Mi Kim sees parallels between the landscape and traditional costumes in Germany and her own tradition, and Karl Omarsson finds in historical facts, like the Emser Depeche, ideas for the duality of force fields, which he implements in his work in purely abstract forms. For Gladstone Thompson, the site where a work of art is created determines it, and so the work can take on extremely different forms – photography or painting – that conquer the site and become witnesses to its inner perception.

In Kuenstlerhaus Schloss Balmoral we will present the works of the Balmoral artists in residence 2009 and one curator in the exhibition

Hortus conclusus/apertus

with Laura Bruce (USA), Jane Cheadle (South Africa), Jáchym Fleig (Czech Republic/Germany), Björn Franke (Germany), Brigitte Mahlknecht (Italy), Christina Nägele (Austria), Frédéric Sanchez (France) , Lieke Snellen (The Netherlands)

Opening: 2nd of October 2009

The exhibition runs from 3rd until 11st of October 2009
Opening hours: Saturday, Sunday, Holyday, 2-6 p.m. and on appointment

The title refers to the situation of a residency programme situated in a historic town in a romantic landscape, far from the noise of megacities. It bears something of the paradise garden as depicted by medieval artists. It offers the quietness required to fully concentrate on work, far away from daily concerns, and allows the artists to focus on the artistic scopes and to experiment with new things without questioning the issue. For many, the encounter with other international artists helps to find new solutions or try new paths. Before the artists can radiate their surroundings with their art, they also need to be in contact with the place and its population. In order to allow the permeability between them and the outer world, the door of the paradise garden has to be kept open at all times. In some way, the quietness needs the dynamics to be productive.

The examination both of Balmoral and the town of Bad Ems have enabled the creation of specific artistic works referring to found motives, tools and situations. For instance: Jáchym Fleig will spread an ornament on the wall, windows and ceiling which relates to the central star motif decorating the stone floor of the residency and the plaster rosette. In doing so, he creates a tension between the desire to decorate the space and the irritation produced by the displacement of its positioning. Laura Bruce, who is presenting a series of oversize graphite drawings, has also started to investigate sculptural forms that will be presented for the first time. The curator Christina Nägele has conducted researches on the memory left by artistic interventions in the public space as recorded by the population of Bad Ems. A programme that she created for schools means there is a further project linking the activities of the residents with the population of the spa town.