The Roter Sand Lighthouse and a Stroke of Luck
September 23, 2006 – January 28, 2007
Born in 1959 and now living in Hamburg and Werder/Havel, Andreas Slominski has made an exceptionally interesting and extraordinary contribution to contemporary international art. Following important solo exhibitions in the Serpentine Gallery in London in 2005, Fondazione Prada in Milan in 2003 and Deutsche Guggenheim in Berlin in 1999, the MMK Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt/Main, is staging the largest museum exhibition of his works to date. The MMK is showcasing a selection of works from the last 20 years, primarily new spatial installations, and the choice bears witness to the enormously radical nature of Slominski’s oeuvre, which with its covert sense of humor holds up a correcting mirror to contemporary culture. How much paint is needed to paint a lighthouse or a battle tank? Will fortune find me, or do I have to go out and find it? How can one startle the people who linger in parks at night? Why is an oven needed to burn forked branches, and what has a football got to do with a child’s skull? The things that Slominski concerns himself with could generally be described as field research – an aesthetic and fundamental investigation of casual perceptions. Slominski discovers creative potential even in the smallest objects and devices. He seeks out the abstruse and within the absurd finds unexpected insights, frequently with great cunning and artifice.
And the works often have a double meaning, or, to quote Nancy Spector »we enter a world in which everything is upside down, in which all our expectations produce the opposite effect, in which comedy quickly becomes tragedy and vice versa, in which there are traps lurking on every corner, ready at all times to take in, torment or indeed delight the observer.«
In line with the MMK’s agenda, the exhibition extends over all three floors of the museum building and is closely linked to the rest of the collection. The MMK has been following Slominski’s artistic output ever since it opened in 1991 and has thus far been able to acquire more than 40 exemplary works for its collection – from the painstakingly ironed, folded and carefully stacked dusters, dishcloths and tea-towels, or bicycles laden with the entire worldly goods of homeless people, to a Christmas decoration for spring, summer and fall. A number of works produced specifically for the exhibition address the cultural history of the City of Frankfurt and the surrounding region. One room is dedicated exclusively to the new group of bright and garish »polystyrene pictures«. They are a statement on what everybody wants to talk about nowadays: painting.