January 22, 2009 - Brandts - Museum of Art and Visual Culture - BLACKOUT
January 22, 2009


Presenting Simon Starling (UK)

January 30 – May 17 2009

Brandts Torv 1

DK-5000 Odense C



On the 29th of January 2009 Kunsthallen Brandts opens the exhibition BLACKOUT. This radically different exhibition is a unique interpretation of the Danish architect, designer, and cultural radical Poul Henningsen (1894-1967).

We have invited British artist Simon Starling and the Danish art group SUPERFLEX to seek inspiration in Poul Henningsen’s ideas on design, art, and society. An engagement with the work of Poul Henningsen is not unusual to the artists but for the first time they are collaborating on an exhibition in which their methods and ideas converge in one artistic expression.1)

Of central importance to the exhibition is Poul Henningsen’s Blackout-lamp designed for Tivoli in 1941. The design of this outdoor lamp, which does not allow any light to spill upwards into the sky, enabled Tivoli to stay open regardless of the prohibitions on light imposed during Second World War. Inspired by this specific lamp Simon Starling and SUPERFLEX have created a new lamp, which will be produced at Brandts re-establishing the former factory that houses Kunsthallen Brandts as a site of industrial production. To reinforce this essential aesthetic and political perspective Kunsthallen Brandts will be blacked out and only slowly, as the lamp production proceeds, become re-illuminated.

On the second floor at Kunsthallen Brandts a metal-workshop will be established and visitors will be able to follow the making of the lamps. In a second space a printing workshop will be constructed around an enormous Heidelberg printing press. Each day during the exhibition new lamps will be produced and hung on a giant grid of wires criss-crossing the exhibition spaces. Just as with the lamps, the printer press will be involved in the ongoing development of a publication that will track and mediate the evolution of the exhibition. During the week additional new pages will be printed and made available to visitors.

The exhibition will open January 29 at 5pm. Carsten Thau, Professor, The Royal School of Architecture in Copenhagen, will open the exhibition. Simon Starling and the artists of SUPERFLEX Bjørnstjerne Christiansen, Jakob Fenger, and Rasmus Nielsen will be present at the opening. Lene Burkard, Curator and Cecilie Bepler, Assistant Curator arranged the exhibition.

Lene Burkard has curated the exhibition as part of a research collaboration with the University of Southern Denmark within the framework of the research project “Poul Henningsen and the Danish Cultural Heritage”, which is supported by The Danish Agency for Science, Technology and Innovation for Culture and Communication.

The exhibition is supported by:
Danish Arts Council
HTOdense A/S
KreativGrafisk A/S

Kunsthallen Brandts

Brandts - Museum of Art and Visual Culture
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