BY Anna Altman in News | 24 JAN 10

Berlin–Paris 2010

Thirteen exhibitions by Parisian galleries open in Berlin

BY Anna Altman in News | 24 JAN 10

Thirteen exhibitions, all presented by Parisian galleries, opened across Berlin last Friday. Exhibitions ranged from solo projects to group shows and three-gallery collaborations, introducing a broad swathe of artists and dealers to a new audience. Openings took place in a range of galleries, from established tastemakers such as Esther Schipper and neugerriemschneider of Berlin, to newcomers like Kreuzberg’s Chert and Sommer + Kohl, located in a promising new gallery area in Schöneberg.

Berlin’s contemporary art market, awash with relatively new dealers and a sprinkle of established German names, contrasts significantly with the combination of modern and contemporary and programmes in Paris. In some unusual pairings, the 13 shows also displayed the breadth of style and taste on display in Paris. Jousse Enterprise, a Parisian dealer who sells contemporary art and furniture designed by Modernist architects, showed Mathieu Matégot’s mid-century metal-mesh furnishings. Martin Barré, a 20th-century painter, displayed clean, graphic canvasses from 1957 to 1991 at Esther Schipper, contrasting with the gallerist’s usual roster of leading conceptual and relational aesthetics artists.


Anne-Marie Schneider, installation view at Konrad Fischer

Studied naivety, with free-hand colourful drawings and sculptures, was on display in projects at Konrad Fischer Galerie and neugerriemschneider. At Konrad Fischer, Galerie Nelson-Freeman’s Anne-Marie Schneider showed a series of quotidian, childlike drawings in pencil, gouache and watercolour, as well as a string hammock weighted with white plaster eggs.


Outside neugerriemschneider’s gallery space, Yona Friedman’s merz tier, on view courtesy of Paris’s Kamel Mennour, greets the viewer with a playful decoration of the brick chimney clad in chicken wire and colourful fabric. Chicken wire makes an appearance again inside, hanging from the ceiling, while jagged Perspex sculptures covered in spray-painted squiggles and lines, and small architectural drawings of Friedman’s playful redesigns of Berlin’s cityscape. Neugerriemschneider, whose space was crowded with a busload of fur-clad collectors, also displayed works by well-known (and well-selling) artists Olafur Eliasson and Rirkrit Tiravanija.


carlier | gebauer, installation view

Berlin’s carlier | gebauer collaborated with Galerie Michel Rein and Galerie Natalie Seroussi from Paris to present a group show of artists from all three spaces. Mathieu Briand, the single artist represented by Seroussi, showed his Bâtons de légende (2009), consisting of seven individual white, polymer posts, each shaped by intricate spiraling patterns of, by turns, brambles, rats, dogs and castle turrets.


Allan Sekula, Prayer for the Americans (1) (1999–2004)

Allan Sekula’s slideshow of 39 photographs, Prayer for the Americans (1) (1999–2004), organized by Michel Rein, traced imagery and references to Mark Twain across the United States. Two videos by Aernout Mik – Scapegoats (2006) and his early Fluff (1996) – feature droves of people moving around in, respectively, tense and ethereal circumstances that never fully reveal themselves to the viewer. The show, not to mention the entire gallery swap, was a bit of a hit-or-miss hodge-podge, but managed to showcase an array of artists working in the two cities.


carlier | gebauer, installation view