March 4, 2016 - Neuer Berliner Kunstverein (n.b.k.) - Where Are We Now / Thu Van Tran: Échange de présents
March 4, 2016

Neuer Berliner Kunstverein (n.b.k.)

Christine Fenzl, Hasina, Berlin-Hellersdorf, 2014, from the series "In Berlin," 2012–present.

Where Are We Now
March 5–May 1, 2016

Thu Van Tran
Échange de présents
March 8–May 1, 2016

Opening: March 4, 7pm

Neuer Berliner Kunstverein (n.b.k.)
Chausseestraße 128/129
10115 Berlin
Germany

www.nbk.org
Facebook / Twitter

Where Are We Now
March 5–May 1, 2016

Thu Van Tran
Échange de présents
March 8–May 1, 2016

Opening: March 4, 7pm

Neuer Berliner Kunstverein (n.b.k.)
Chausseestraße 128/129
10115 Berlin
Germany

www.nbk.org
Facebook / Twitter

Where Are We Now
Awst & Walther, Fritz Bornstück, Peggy Buth, Kerstin Cmelka, Carolina Hellsgård, Christine Fenzl, Klaus Jörres, Vika Kirchenbauer, Wojciech Kosma in Cooperation with Sarah Harrison and Kandis Williams, Cyrill Lachauer, Paul Plamper, kate-hers RHEE, Jeremy Shaw, Viron Erol Vert, Andrea Winkler

Curators: Frank Wagner, Silke Wittig

With the exhibition Where Are We Now, Neuer Berliner Kunstverein resumes the exhibition series with fellows of the Fine Arts Scholarship of the Berlin Senate in 2016. Fifteen emerging, international positions of the contemporary art scene in Berlin will be presented. Using various media and diverse forms of expression and approaches, the artists address current social issues.

The exhibition encompasses a wide range of topics. With references to ethnology, natural science, philosophy, film and theater, influences of cultural identity, different concepts of reality and sociopolitical spaces of tension are scrutinized and dealt with in installations, videos, photographs, paintings, sculptures, sound installations and performances. The exhibition’s title refers to David Bowie’s song "Where Are We Now?," in which Bowie retrospectively illuminates his time in West Berlin in the late 1970s as well as the social developments and changes since then. The artists represented in the exhibition almost all belong to the generation that was born in that period since the 1970s. In the exhibition they deal both with the conditions of their production sites as well as with the period of the 1980s and 1990s, which informed them during their adolescence. In times of rapid change, political and financial crises, insecurity, terror and social divisions, the title Where Are We Now stands for an inventory of the current situation and at the same time asks for a taking up of positions. Furthermore, the title pays tribute to the late David Bowie, in whose oeuvre Berlin played a central role. Thus, the exhibition Where Are We Now provides approaches of a critical understanding of present and past models of life—as well as their heroes, ideals and utopias.


Publication
As part of the n.b.k. book series “Berlin," a publication by Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther König, Cologne is released, with an introduction by Tim Renner and Marius Babias as well as texts by Maxim Biller, Frank Wagner and Silke Wittig.

Program
Where Are We Now

Thursday, March 10, 7pm
Artist talk with Peggy Buth (artist, Berlin), Kerstin Cmelka (artist, Berlin), Vika Kirchenbauer (artist, Berlin) and Viron Erol Vert (artist, Berlin), moderated by Brigitte Werneburg (editor die tageszeitung, Berlin)

Measuring the World
Thursday, April 7, 7pm
Artist talk with Awst & Walther (artists, Berlin), Cyrill Lachauer (artist, Berlin) and Jeremy Shaw (artist, Berlin), moderated by Dorothea von Hantelmann (art historian, curator, Berlin)

Dirk von Lowtzow
Sunday, May 1, 8pm
Concert

n.b.k. Showroom
Thu Van Tran
Échange de présents.
*

Curator: Silke Wittig

The exhibition at Neuer Berliner Kunstverein is Thu Van Tran’s first solo exhibition in Germany. Based on her experiences as a Vietnamese woman living in France, in her work she addresses the colonial history of her native country and the impact of power and exploitation. In her latest series of works she deals with the raw material rubber, which in this context stands for the suppression of Vietnam under French colonial rule. The starting point for the works, specially produced for the exhibition, is a relief on the facade of the Palais de la Porte Dorée, which was built in 1931 on the occasion of the Colonial Exhibition in Paris. Here, the peoples of the French colonies are depicted while extracting raw materials such as rubber and exotic woods, yet in the inside of the palace the so-called "intellectual" contributions by France to the civilization of the indigenous peoples are illustrated on a monumental fresco. In the mural work Penetrable (2016) and the sculpture Échange de présents (2016), Thu Van Tran takes up the material and the symbolism of the commodity rubber and illuminates the bitter irony in the depiction of the supposed exchange. Her works visualize how the writing of history is manifested with the occupying power’s Western view on the population of the colonies. The memory work materializes in the photograms Sunstroke (2016) through traces of her notebooks, sketch blocks and remnants from her studio. In addition, the Super 8 film Far East (2016) will be shown, in which Thu Van Tran examines the historical and political links between Vietnam and the former GDR and how in Berlin she embarks on a search for traces and repercussions of communism. 

Thu Van Tran (b. 1979 in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam) lives in Paris. Solo exhibitions (selection): Macleay Museum, Sydney (2016); Les Abattoirs – FRAC Midi-Pyrénées, Toulouse, France (2016); Galerie Art & Essai, Rennes, France (2015); Centre d'Art Villa du Parc, Annemasse, France (2013); Musée éclaté de la Presqu'île de Caen, France (2013); La Maison Rouge, Paris (2010); Centre Culturel Français de Hanoi, Vietnam (2007); Musée des Beaux-Arts de Mulhouse, France (2006). Group exhibitions (selection): Maison d’Art Bernard Anthonioz, Nogent-sur-Marne (2015); La Kunsthalle, Mulhouse, France (2015); Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium, Brussels (2014); Centre Pompidou, Paris (2014); Le Plateau – FRAC Île-de-France, Paris (2014); Tanas, Berlin (2013); Le Crédac, Ivry-sur-Seine, France (2013); Palais des Beaux-Arts, Paris (2011, 2006); Kimusa – Artsonje Center, Seoul (2010).

*The exhibition will be closed on March 25, 2016.

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