The three floors of Freies Museum Berlin neatly align for Satellites, three separately curated exhibitions that investigate different art world spheres and the poetics of “orbital,” outer, and inner space – from confined buildings, to the environment and vast nature, and beyond the atmospheric limits reaching into the alien cosmos. Working independent of one another at the outset of this collaboration, Hannes Bend, Trong G. Nguyen, and Emilie Trice have put together distinctive shows from varying curatorial perspectives that are appropriately left to harmonize in unsuspecting ways over the three levels. The triumvirate of exhibitions, with their own subtitles, represent the first collaboration between the Berlin-based Bend and Trice, and New Yorker Nguyen.
Looking at nature and open space from an ecological point of view, Emilie Trice’s To The Thawing Wind presents the works of David Buckland, Awst & Walther, and Louisa Conrad & Lucas Farrell. Whether projecting The End of Ice (Buckland) or subjecting oneself to the frozen recesses of Iceland and the Arctic, these artists reveal our threatened environments while romanticizing the transitory states of nature. Not surprisingly, Trice’s five have also worked in the orbs of architecture, theater direction, dance, set design, anthropology, poetry, and environmental activism.
Hannes Bend’s curatorial contribution, Satellites in the Night, is an exploration of the “night-life” of modern technology, where science and romance meet. From black hole paintings by Johanna Tiedtke and warped sculptures of Robert Lazzarini, to the Lego installations of Knud Young Lunde, these works not only illuminate the poetic side of nature and science, but also its playful countenance. The title also hints at the geographic “satellites” of the art world, comprising artists who locate themselves internationally. Other artists include Maxime Ballesteros, John von Bergen, Christine De La Garenne, Trong G. Nguyen, and Jomar Statkun.
Trong G. Nguyen’s Room without a View brings together a group of artists whose works consider the ‘confines’ of space and the emotional and psychological experiences within such domains. Berlin (and by extension Freies Museum Berlin), with its glut of alternative buildings that constantly shift utility, presents an opportune place to investigate the shifting limits inherent in domestic space, landscape, and public architecture. Artists include: Hannes Bend, Joséphine Wister Faure, Chantel Foretich, Christopher K. Ho, Darri Lorenzen, Abby Manock, Christian Nguyen, Zhang Qing, Rebecca Reeve, and Carlos Silva.