„Limbo Holding Inc. – Batiken mit Gerhard Richter“ and „Nucleus“. These two exhibitions took place at once @ produzenten I galerie Dresden, Germany, April- May 2019. The first one is a conceptual, the second one an exhibition of expressive painting. Both interplaying and functioning like a symbolic image.
Both exhibitions depict an area of conflict between traditional values- the existential and humanist implications of figurative painting and the conceptual approach of a more or less market- fundamentalist mindset of our late capitalist epoch.
Leaving its traces in conceptual depletion of traditional values in the Fine Arts through the formal principle of deception and disappointment, most of the renowned artists today who produce art in that way are backed up by the participants of the highly speculative art market that started to grow in the 1970s as one of the results of the abandonment of the gold standard and the easy money- policy by the USA. This happening marked the gate into abasement of almost each and every traditional idea of value. From that point on, today‘s market-fundamentalism developed, transforming all values into „narrations“ (as Robert Shiller points out in his theory of „Narrative Economics“) thus also effecting our ethical, cultural and social values.
As a reflection of today‘s global politics that is mostly driven by corporations, the “Winner Artists“ (Wolfhang Ullrich) are producers, marketeers, investors and profiteers of their own art in one person, using the bourgeois structures and vocabulary of the art world as money-driven tools to bring forward their careers to become so called „blue-chip artists“. They are those who can do whatever they want – even if it does not contribute to any measurable or comprehensible artistic value, but to speculative tactics of the finance capitalism, tax fraud and corruption. In other words: The high-priced, famous contemporary art is mostly not about art but about personal relations and about money- and therefor it more and more becomes some kind of a mysterious global investment and holding – system for the upper 5%.
It is obvious now why most of these `artworks´ are just objects that look somehow like art to cover their true purpose- because they still need to be presented in the public museums around the globe to hold or increase their monetary value. But they do not even have to be based on new original ideas: You could put some random paint behind glass panes or tie-dye some sheets of cotton. The only question is: is there a concept that is capable of satisfying the demand on this global art market and- even more important: Does the artist have access to this elitist club?
Nevertheless art- as we still call this stuff- is the symbolic `mirror of its time‘, and the metaphorical parallel to `real life´. Therefore the combination of these two representations of seemingly opposing worldviews in one exhibition context, raises questions of revaluation of traditional values and their symbols or representations at the turning point of history; it also raises questions about perception, information, and the concepts of truth and identity, both individually and collectively that became visible in the Fine Arts through the research on art and society by Pierre Bourdieu.
The two-in-one exhibition also contrasts the qualities of both artistic approaches, thus giving both of them the possibility to exist equally in an artist‘s oevre based on their specific characteristics, content and usage.
For an interview (german language) with the art historian Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich click here: