Arndt and Partner are delighted to present the first solo show by Josephine Meckseper in Berlin. Josephine Meckseper has been living in the United States since the beginning of the 1990s and has since maintained a notable critique of the internal and foreign political occurrences in her chosen home. This summer, the European public gained an impression of the election campaign machine during “election year” when Barak Obama made his appearance at Berlin’s Victory Column. The significance of this election year and the fifth anniversary of the Iraq war are reflected in the exhibited work of the New York-based artist. Meckseper transforms the commercial zone of the gallery into a conceptually politicized territory. Through her radical signature use of display systems and commodity structures, she exposes the flaws of US politics since 2001. One should pay particular attention to the quiet, low-key symbols in the exhibition. Vis-à-vis the display cabinet entitled Fall of the Empire is the inconspicuously effective work with the working title Walker. A walking frame adorned with a fox tail, a bible and an oil canister. A provocative, almost absurd reference to the injured, returned war veterans, as is the logo of the Blackwater Group, America’s largest private security and militia firm, that campaigns with the slogan: “American’s Veterans Serving America…Again!” In her Film 0% Down she refers to the militaristic advertising rhetoric of the automobile industry and lays open their crude sales tactics used during the war. Meckseper also picks up on this theme in her collages on canvas. Images of American cars still wrapped in plastic and apparently unused play ironically upon a car-centred American society that is so willing lead by the automotive industry. Meckseper skilfully re-contextualises and dissects the phenomenon of American society, in particular through the incorporation of the rhetoric and strategies of politics and advertisement in her work.
Born in Lilienthal, Germany, Josephine Meckseper studied at the California Institute of the Arts, California and at the Universität der Künste, Berlin. She lives and works in New York. In addition to successful solo exhibitions, for example at the Kunstmuseum Stuttgart (2007) and the Gesellschaft für Aktuelle Kunst, Bremen (2008), she has also taken part in numerous national and international group exhibitions including; P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, New York (1999), at the Frankfurter Kunstverein (2003), at the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, und at the Royal Academy of Arts, London (both 2006). Currently her work can be seen in the exhibition New Photography 2008: Josephine Meckseper and Mikhael Subotzky in the MoMA, New York (until 05.01.2009).
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