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Atelierbesuch , 2012 © Courtesy of the artist & Galerie Von Bartha Garage

Kannenfeldplatz 6
4056 Basel
November 24th, 2012 - January 26th, 2013

+41 61 322 10 00
Tue - Fri 2-6pm, Sat 11am-4pm
installation, sculpture


With his many-facetted works, which seek to go beyond the constraints of the classical vocabulary of art forms, Beat Zoderer is one of the Swiss artists that have found international recognition. His works have been shown all over the world in renowned venues. In his objects, wall pieces, installations and sculptures, he thematizes a nonchalant combination of “high” and “low”. The past is reflected upon without sentimentalizing, while the traditional canons of art are newly interpreted in a subversive and refreshing manner. Thus he deconstructs and vitalises concrete and constructive art by subtly leveraging out its rigorousness, its rationality and its perfectionism.

On the premises of the von Bartha Garage Beat Zoderer (born in Zurich in 1955, residing and working in Wettingen) is showing new works, among them a spectacular installation made out of plexiglas balls. Additionally, he is presening two groups of works that oscillate between the poles of intention and coincidence and in the heterogeneity of their formal solutions emphasise the poetry of the material used.

Beat Zoderer explores the possibilities of the material, posing formal questions that lead to ingenious and ironic visual experiences. It is striking how he materialises his ideas with authentic and direct gestures and how he indulges in his enthusiasm for luminous colours – often in ready-made material from a department store – or for the diverse characteristics of the material. Thus, his works do not seek to decline a strict set of art forms completely – which would call to mind the objectivity and perfectionism of minimalism – but attempt instead to show how and out of what they have originated. Making the construction visible, its imperfection, is an essential characteristic of Zoderer’s 30-year work philosophy. Small surface irregularities or so-called “surprises” are part of the creativeention process and an integral part of a work – a subjectivity that relativises the puristic core and allows an endearing look at the material, infusing it with a kind of soul.

Constructed foldings out of coloured sheet-metal strips call to mind brushstrokes — in spite of the abstraction involved. Foldings that attempt “to square the circle” meet up with sculptural works made of concrete. Elegance confronts roughness. The contrasting juxtaposition of the works thematizes more than an interaction of material aesthetics. It is a matter of contrasting severity and playfulness, intention and coincidence, accurate lines and amorphous structures – and sensitising spatial perception.