June 3, 2008 - Bonner Kunstverein - Fikret Atay, Thomas Baumann and Anne Collier
June 3, 2008

Fikret Atay, Thomas Baumann and Anne Collier

Opening, Sunday, 15 June, 11 am
16 June – 18 August 2008
in cooperation with Biennale Bonn: Bosporus 2008


Opening, Sunday, 15 June, 11 am
16 June – 17 August 2008



The video work THEORETICIAN, which the Kurdish artist FIKRET ATAY has developed for the Kunstverein on the occasion of the Biennale Bonn: Bosperus, has as its theme the religious education of the youth in Turkey.

In order to imprint the daily lessons in religion better in their mind, the youths repeat the subject matter after school. The pupils, up to fifty strong, chant out loud while circling the room. Since none pays attention to the rhythm of the others when reciting, a discordant babble is the result.

ATAYS work underlines the contradictions that are associated with such teaching practices and sharpens our consciousness for the problematics of a strict religious upbringing. Also interesting is the question of the effects that physical activity and movement, such as walking and talking, have on the processes of learning and understanding.

FIKRET ATAY’s video works are closely linked to the specifically cultural, social and geographic phenomena and issues of his homeland. The artist in his videos thematizes the way young people grow up in a society that is characterized by upheaval and manifests the way it has developed by combining oriental traditions with current western influences. The situations he shows arouse in the viewer familiar and, at the same time, unfamiliar scenarios and engender a feeling of contradiction and dissonance. Whereby the situations we are shown raise questions as to tradition and development, identity and the role of the individual in society. Thus the issues claim a validity that allows them to be carried over to other cultures and situations.

ATAY was born 1976 in Batman, a region in southeastern Turkey close to the Iraqi border. He has had solo exhibitions, among others, in Paris, Le Plateau/Frac Ile-de-France (2006) as well as in Kunstverein Rheinland/Westphalia in Düsseldorf (2005). He has also participated in various group exhibitions such as the Sydney Biennial (2006) and the Istanbul Biennial (2005). The artist lives and works in Batman and Paris.


“BALANCING THE WRONG AND THE TRUE …” is the first solo exhibition in Germany of the Austrian artist THOMAS BAUMANN (born 1967 in Salzburg, lives in Vienna), which has been conceived in collaboration with Kunsthaus Baselland. BAUMANN can point to numerous exhibition activities, among others at the Museum of Modern Art in Passau, at the Secession in Vienna or in group exhibitions at Museum Tinguely, Kunsthaus Graz and Haus Konstruktiv Zurich.

Characteristic for BAUMANN’s artistic production is a method of networking and circulating art genres and a critical questioning of evaluations or value and form systems. With his electronic sculptures, his mechanically-produced paintings, films and installations, he installs a platform for visitors to (re)act and at the same time seeks structural points of contact between material and mental space.

THOMAS BAUMANN, through the interactive character of his works, transmits to the viewer a curiosity for experimentally sniffing out new ways. He expands classical sculptural training to include contemporary scientific components and issues. In his artworks he places scientific achievements and cultural developments once again at our disposal and then, thus modified, leads them back into the endless political and cultural circulation of history. Statics, dissolutions and dynamics, past, present and future, perception, thinking and doing, appear in an ever new balance that brings variables to a fleeting state of being.

A Folio Verlag catalogue on the exhibition has been published, edited by Sabine Schaschl/Kunsthaus Baselland with contributions written by Chistian Höller, Gregor Jansen and Christina Végh and an interview with Thomas Baumann and Sabine Schaschl.


The Bonner Kunstverein presents the American artist ANNE COLLIER (*1970, lives in New York) in her first institutional solo exhibition in Germany. Born on the west coast, she got her degree at UCLA in 2001. Her work was shown at the Whitney Biennial 2007 in New York. She was invited this year for the first time to give solo exhibitions in Vancouver (Presentation House Gallery, January 2008) and in Liverpool (Open Eye Gallery, April 2008).

ANNE COLLIER is aligned with the tradition of a conceptually oriented work ideal as practiced by artists such as JOHN BALDESSSARI, SHERRY LEVINE, LOUISE LAWLER or CHIRSTOPHER WILLIAMS. With her photographic approach, COLLIER reflects the medium of photography per se, as well as the role of photography in contemporary culture. Photographic images of the everyday media world – from film poster via art magazines to books and record covers – serve her as motif.

By photographing photographic material, the artist makes her theme that of our pictorial access to the world. This is reinforced when the artist takes up the motif of the eye, as well as its technical counterpart: the photo camera. Besides the precise and simultaneously reduced and low-key focus on the artistic issue of seeing, understanding and appropriating, COLLIER frequently charges her pictures with a strange patina of nostalgia and longing. Since the artist openly reveals her use of photographed images – folds in the paper and other traces are visible on the perfect picture surface – the motifs are given a history of personal usage. Who may have collected, preserved or used these photos and for whatever purpose? Intimate associations and social networks seem to shine very quietly forth from behind the intentionally distanced photographs.

An artist’s book in the form of a poster with a portfolio will be published, with articles by Stefan Kalmár and Christina Végh in Ger/Eng.

Contact: Anna Dietz, Bonner Kunstverein, a.dietz@bonner-kunstverein.de

Image Above:
Top: FIKRET ATAY Theoretician, 2008, Filmstills. Copyright: Bonner Kunstverein and artist

Midst: Thomas Baumann, Asilver, 1999/2007
installation view Kunsthaus Baselland. Copyright: Galerie Krobath Wimmer, Wien, und Nicolas Krupp, Basel, an artist

Below: ANNE COLLIER, Folded Madonna Poster (Steven Meisel), 2007. Copyright: Gallery Corvi-Mora, London and artist

Bonner Kunstverein

Bonner Kunstverein
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