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10 Aug 2009

ABOVE GROUND_09 feat. Katerina Seda / Antje Schiffers & Thomas Sprenger/ Roland Fuhrmann

© Katerina Seda working at 'The Ghost of Uhyst'
photo credits: Michal Hladik



opening August, 15th , 2009 at 3.30 p.m. in the village of Uhyst


On view in the villages of Uhyst, Boxberg & Nochten (near Bautzen/ Saxony/Germany)

D – 02999 Uhyst
D -02943 Boxberg

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Public Art projects for the Lausitz Lake District

Katerina Seda
Antje Schiffers & Thomas Sprenger
Roland Fuhrmann

curated by: Susanne Altmann

ÜBER TAGE made its debut in 2007 and continues in 2009. Our aim is the careful integration of contemporary art into the Lusatian Lake District. Landscape is understood here as resulting from an interplay of the natural, cultural and social spheres. On the bed of the lake Bärwalder See lie villages evacuated to make way for opencast lignite mining. At the same time, the villages Uhyst and Boxberg are becoming 'harbor towns'. Traumatization coexists with revitalization, the burdens of the past with opportunities for the future. Emerging where such symptoms intersect are intriguing possibilities for artists to realize work that contributes to regional integration while operating on the level of international contemporary art.

This year, Czech artist Katerina Seda - well-known for her contribution to the 4th Berlin Biennale and to documenta 12 - is at work on a spectacular action, one that incorporates all available residents of the 800-strong community of Uhyst. In a drawing and poster action, they join forces to conjure the 'Ghost of Uhyst'. Developed by means of this communicative process, one extending over a weeklong period, is a portrait of this village, one appropriated by the community in a concluding mass signature action to take place on the village square. It is Seda's first onsite-project outside the Czech Republic and will be featured at the Lyon Biennale in September 2009.

Erected this year by Berlin artist Roland Fuhrmann directly on the banks of the imposing Bärwalder See, and extending the axis leading toward the stately Baroque palace building, are two functional sculptures, their viewing tubes oriented precisely toward the polestar. This heavenly body, referred to as Polaris, or in scientific terminology as 'α UMi', constitutes a seemingly unalterable extension of the Earth's axis, its extraordinary luminosity making it a symbol of cosmic orientation.

Antje Schiffers & Thomas Sprenger
of Berlin have worked together for many years in rural regions throughout Europe. For ÜBER TAGE, they join forces with local residents of the lakeside communities in order to develop a product that is wholly typical of the region, and one manufactured currently in local handicraft enterprises according to designs by the artists and their collaborators. On August 15th, the product will be launched publicly in a promotional film which reveals the story of its genesis. Finally, the product will be available for purchase at an 'International Village Shoppe', a permanent sales stand located in Findlingspark Nochten - together with other amusing and useful 'village products' manufactured throughout Europe. But what exactly is the Boxberg Product? All will be revealed on August, 15th.

commissioned an funded by: Municipality of Boxberg/ O.L.

Production: Reinhardt von Bergen-Wedemeyer

On August, 15th 2009, starting at 9 a.m. , there will be a signing action with Kateřina Šedá and the inhabitants of Uhyst at the central square of the village. Starting at 4.30 p.m., the 'Boxberg Product' by Schiffers & Sprenger will be publicly launched in the village of Boxberg (Gemeindezentrum). BBQ follows

The projects by Rupprecht Matthies and Joanna Rajkowska (2008), by Stefan Schröder and Juliane Köhler (2007) are still on public view.

co-funded by Kulturstiftung des Freistaats Sachsen