Mit Seife und Gabeln

After a previous experience at Kunstraum Kreuzlingen and a year of research compiling material, curators Daniela Petrini and Tanja Trampe have displayed seventeen different approaches around the topic luck and happiness in a second exhibition zum Glück, currently hosted at Substitut.


In fact, I happened to be accidentally charmed the day of my visit. Right after entering the space I was invited to participate in “Chance Mapping”, a workshop with Rüdiger Schlömer, one of the artists in the show. His work became alive by making us rolling dices and sewing “chance buttons” in our clothes, that hopefully will flash back in some photograph that he is eager to collect for the documentation of his project.

The scent of something sweet and old that is yet familiar but difficult to categorize fills the room... fermenting apples and red wine are part of the site-specific installation “Go West” by Sandra Knecht, a work that deals with lyrical symbols, with a basis on the narrative imagery from Citizen Kane. Behind the barrack that houses her work, a more subtle piece, a pane with a prayer on it, that apparently rests still in a corner until it abruptly rises with a mourning chant that Benjamin Eggers recorded in a previous performance. A piece that clearly evokes faith, hope and ritualism.
Coming from very different fields of work and using really varying media that includes from video installation to objet trouvé, each artist brings an idea of luck and/or happiness? (I just love the ambivalence of the german term), each from their very own position. Sometimes this is attached to a more literal sense, as Sebastian Schaub embodies with his lottery ticket, while some others evoke rather different associations, as seen in Marion Strunk's Memento Mori.

Luck, coincidence... but also the possibility of a catastrophe is suggested by ekw14,90, a bunch of four artists satirizing Hollywood ridiculously apocalyptic films with their apparently naive drawings.
A quality I'm always pleased to see is fragility, for instance in Andy Storchenegger's defiance to gravity. It is also quite funny now, that there is a current trend in art that swings from (conceptual) melancholia to post-irony. In this exhibition we will find very different outlooks and works that will sometimes establish dialogues between them, and some other clash, but won't be afraid of suggesting suitable conditions in the quest for Glück.

Struck by Lewis Carroll's The Hunting of the Snark, and far from being a guidebook packed with helpful advices to become happier, Mit Seife und Gabeln claims to be an investigation about Glück. As in Carroll's absurd story about unlucky people seeking for luck, this discourse is about reflecting on the moment when we are fully aware of the meaning of luck.

There is a catalogue available in the ocassion of this exhibition, which by the way is open until December 10th.
I highly encourage you visit it and pick one of the wrapped chance buttons from the wall and take part of this. Mine didn't flash back so far, but maybe this time I'll be lucky.

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