With works by Anna Boghiguian, Alice Creischer, Eugenio Dittborn, Sophie Gogl, Barbara Hammer, Sandra Brandeis Crawford, Goshka Macuga, Monsieur Zohore & others.

Opening – 26 APR 2024, 6-9 pm

Barbara Hammer, Pools, 1981, 16 mm film on video, color, sound (with Barbara Klutins), 9 min., video still.
Courtesy Estate of Barbara Hammer and KOW, Berlin.

A small exhibition at KOW that will open for the 2024 Gallery Weekend Berlin shows off the strengths of subtler notes. As politics and society are increasingly riven by entrenched antagonisms and reasoned argument is drowned out by simplistic and historically myopic polemics, the exhibition showcases international artists who offer finely nuanced perspectives on the layers of time behind the present, bringing a delicate sensibility to bear on complex histories.

Alice Creischer, It is March 24th 2000 which is compelling to be prospective, 2015-2016, mixed media installation.
Courtesy the artist and KOW, Berlin; photo: Ladislav Zajac, Berlin.

The artists in the exhibition perform the labor of remembering and translate moments in time and narratives into material reality. Their works bring home to us how protean the present is, how intricate and complicated the engagement with it. Too complicated for the pace and volume of politics and media to do justice to it, as recent experience has made painfully clear. One of art’s merits, we are learning these days, is its indispensable function as a correction: it enriches everything that looks, or is packaged to look, neat and simple by supplying unpleasant complexities. Thank you dear art!

Text: Alexander Koch

Sandra Brandeis Crawford, „- in dem Gefühl vor der ganzen Weite der Zukunft zu sitzen“ 1926 Clara Westhof, 1991, from the series „Creative Women“, 100 x 70 cm, mixed media.
Courtesy the artist and KOW, Berlin.

Clemens von Wedemeyer

Opening – 26 APR 2024, 6-9 pm

Clemens von Wedemeyer, Surface / Composition, 2024, video still, courtesy the artist and KOW, Berlin

How do we arrange ourselves? How are we arranged? And how can one visualize the answers to these questions? Clemens von Wedemeyer’s new films, which KOW presents for the 2024 Gallery Weekend Berlin, delve into the question of the networked dimension of our existence and grapple with how to represent it.

The central work in the exhibition is an abstract animated film. White dots appear on a black ground and take on infinitely varied, increasingly complex and increasingly spectacular forms: interrelations between individuals, networked human worlds, social geometries. The British musician Anne Clark’s haunting voice announces what we will see in the abstraction: A group of friends. A class system. A revolution erupting. Yet as the constellations grow ever more complex, the limitations of representation by model become evident—machines may be capable of keeping track of what is happening in the social sphere, but humans are not.

Clemens von Wedemeyer, Social Geometry, 2024, video still, courtesy the artist and KOW, Berlin

Clemens von Wedemeyer, Social Geometry, 2024, video still, courtesy the artist and KOW, Berlin

Wedemeyer’s interest in group dynamics, in human masses and their power in the image has informed his art for a quarter-century. Like earlier works, his new film Social Geometry traces a path from the individual subject to the mass, the very, very many, and the (il)legibility of its behavior. His second film, Surface Composition, illustrates another side of the networks, the contemporary platforms on which people connect and organize themselves.

Traveling in California, he recorded sites possessed of real-world network power like the headquarters of Apple, Meta, Amazon, Space X, and the United States Postal Service, as well as infrastructures of commerce, containers, mines, and other motifs, in impersonal documentary images. They show the nondescript building complexes of systemically relevant companies, empty streets, a few transport vehicles. The reality of today’s networks is opaque; their phenomenological blankness becomes manifest in the additive editing, sustained by a psychedelic soundtrack supplied by the Hungarian improvisational musician Zsolt Sőrés.

Text: Alexander Koch
Social Geometry was developed in collaboration with Alexander Repp and Samuel Richter.