Nadia Kaabi Linke: "Tatort"
From September 25th to November 20th 2010, Galerie Christian Hosp proudly presents the first solo exhibition of Berlin-based artist Nadia Kaabi Linke. Under the title Tatort, curator Jamila Adeli brings together eight of the artist’s recent works on “crime scene” investigation, revealing all kinds of imprints of life.
Nadia Kaabi Linke’s “crime scenes“ are locations where traces become visible – graffiti on city walls and scratches on bus windows. In her work, these unnoticed human legacies become conspicuous through their transfer to a new location. The title of the exhibition initially invites us to understand the artworks through the lens of criminology. The classical crime scene serves the investigators primarily as a source of information and perception, leading to the reconstruction of human action through forensic work. The crime scene reveals signs about offender and victim, which are then fictionalised into a logical narrative in order to appraise the deeds and motives of the plot.
Nadia Kaabi Linke is interested in traces and stories left behind on „crime scenes“. As opposed to classical criminology, she does not deliver any judgement in her work. She leaves the fiction behind the deeds to the beholder to imagine. She processes her „crime scenes“ in an almost forensic manner, making hidden cracks and contours visible to our optical reality. With the help of forensic powder, she takes imprints of scratches and graffiti on subways and bus shelter windows and transfers them onto glass. The artist explains: „Because human skin gets into contact with the glass windows, sebum - and therefore a physical part of the body - is left behind as a trace.“ The outcome is an artwork that makes the unseen elements of everyday life visible. „It’s kind of eerie because the people were really there and have left behind traces of skin and hair.“
Through her technique of taking imprints, Nadia Kaabi Linke reproduces the location of an action but makes it unrecognisable as such. She converts violent human actions into filigreed beauties. The most drastic example thereof is the installation Fleischerei Glück, showing precious porcelain imprints of dried beef stomachs. The inscription on Walter Benjamin’s gravestone – „There is no document of civilization that is not at the same time a document of barbarism“ – illuminates what Nadia Kaabi Linkes artworks emphasize: aesthetic beauty and human violence merged together in the moment of an event.