Joëlle Tuerlinckx

Joëlle Tuerlinckx

Haus der Kunst

Joëlle Tuerlinckx, L’Héritage (Heritage), 2012. Cans, inscription with felt-tip pen (found objects), artificial illumination (spot richardson).*

May 10, 2013

Joëlle Tuerlinckx 
June 9–September 29, 2013

Haus der Kunst
Prinzregentenstrasse 1
80538 Munich, Germany 
Hours: Monday–Sunday 10am–8pm
Thursday 10am–10pm

T 49 (0)89 21127-113
F 49 (0)89 21127-157
mail [​at​]

In her first retrospective exhibition in Germany, Joëlle Tuerlinckx (b. 1958, Brussels) presents arrangements of sculptures, films, collages and drawings, quoting the conventions museums use to present archive material or encyclopedic and historical knowledge. The inclusion of newspaper clippings, for instance, creates the impression of documentary material and an abundance of serial works is emphasized in a ‘salon hang.’ Tuerlinckx utilises many different forms of presentational devices, resulting in an associative and accumulative exhibition experience that continually alters according to how the space is navigated.

The retrospective consists of three parts and is on view in three locations: Brussels, Munich and Bristol. The exhibition has a different title at each venue: WOR(LD)K IN PROGRESS? in Brussels, WORLD(K) IN PROGRESS? in Munich and WOR(L)D(K) IN PROGRESS? in Bristol. Each title expresses the show’s specific focus at that location: progress regarding work, worldliness and language, and doubts about this progress. Tuerlinckx reactivates earlier works and provides them with new constellations, as well as adding new works. The fact that the exhibition changes from venue to venue corresponds to Tuerlinckx’s concept. “When I am offered an exhibition space, it is as if I have received a kind of parcel, a packet of air,” says the artist, describing her approach. Tuerlinckx’s exhibitions are descriptions of how an empty space changes when it houses her works and allow the viewers to participate in this process. Comparable to a literary manuscript, in which the author’s handwriting and corrections gradually fill the blank pages and provide information on the process of writing, Tuerlinckx fills the empty space with her artistic vocabulary. She acknowledges that exhibition spaces vary from institution to institution.

All attempts to make sense of something in a conventional way—through the title of a series, the selection of newspaper clippings, the way an object is presented—lead to a shift in perception emphasising the basic conditions of seeing.

In Tuerlinckx’s Lexikon, the artist defines terms such as “exposition / exhibition”: “an exhibition is, first and foremost, an experience of space—space composed, perhaps, of objects of space—that proposes action, or reaction, as a means of reflection, of thinking our human condition.” The entry for “Rien / Nichts” (Nothing) is: “what there is when there is nothing left. From a to a, including b, including what we imagine a to be.” Only concerning its alphabetical order does the “lexicon” do what we expect a dictionary to do. The usual system of academic instrumentation is not employed here. In its place is a poetic quality. This approach is similar to that of pataphysics and its senseless parodies of scientific methods. At the same time, it stands in the tradition of artists such as Marcel Duchamp and Marcel Broodthaers, who also investigated the mechanisms of looking at art.

The catalogue Joëlle Tuerlinckx – WORLD(K) IN PROGRESS? is published by Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther König. With essays by Julienne Lorz, Catherine Mayeur, Dirk Snauwaert, Tom Trevor and Joëlle Tuerlinckx. 344 pages, 280 b/w  images; ISBN 978-3-86335-380-3.

*Joëlle Tuerlinckx, L’Héritage (Heritage), 2012. Cans, inscription with felt-tip pen (found objects), artificial illumination (spot richardson). Courtesy Galerie nächst St. Stephan Rosemarie Schwarzwälder, Vienna. © Joëlle Tuerlinckx.

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