BUNGALOW is a space located in the basement of ChertLüdde dedicated to young contemporary artists. The aim of BUNGALOW is to provide further emphasis on the research-based aspect of the gallery program, by inviting a new generation of artists to develop a project specific to the space and context. BUNGALOW projects occur by invitation from the gallery.
Juan Antonio Olivares
Opening reception 26 April 2019, 6:00 – 9:00 pm
Until 15 June 2019
As part of Gallery Weekend Berlin 2019
Juan Antonio Olivares (b. 1988) presents Vespula Vulgaris, a 5-channel sound-sculpture for BUNGALOW.
The strongest trees have endured against great odds, overcoming intense cold, gales and meager soil, growing despite a lack of nourishment. Plants battle against nature’s forces, and against each other. The weakest die. But their death allows other trees, plants, animals to grow.
A tree has overtaken the space.
I am filthy. I am riddled with lice. My skin is encrusted with the scabs and scales of leprosy, and covered with yellowish pus. I know neither the water of rivers nor the dew of clouds. Sitting in a shapeless piece of furniture, I have not moved my limbs now for four centuries. My feet have taken root in the ground. Up to my belly they form a sort of tenacious vegetation, full of parasites. This vegetation no longer has anything in common with other plants, nor is it flesh. And yet my heart beats.
Problems tend to manifest themselves regardless of how much one attempts to avoid them. Hanging from the branches are abandoned wasp nests(1), in which surface transducers have been embedded so that the nests become vessels of sound.
Imagining the tree as an extension of the human mind, the space has transformed into a site of the subconscious, a place of darkness where fragmentation and reconstruction occurs, where light must struggle to emerge. Eyes closed. You will go deeper, and deeper, and deeper.
Feels good doesn’t it?
It sort of feels like going down an elevator.
Traveler, when you pass near by me, do not address the least word of consolation to me—I implore you. Go away…let me not inspire in you any act of piety. Hatred is stranger than you think; its action is inexplicable, like the broken appearance of a stick in water.
Juan Antonio Olivares (b. 1988) was born in Puerto Rico to Colombian/Chilean parents, and is currently based in New York. He received a BA in Visual Arts and Philosophy from Columbia University in 2011 and attended the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf with Prof. Christopher Williams from 2015-6. He recently had his first institutional solo show at the Whitney Museum of American Art, Moléculas, opening in March 2018. Other recent exhibitions include: I. Summer (after the Great Game) at Miguel Abreu Gallery, NYC; Moléculas at Off Vendome, NYC; Please Respond at M/L Artspace, Venice. His work is included in the permanent collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art, Adrastus, and Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo.
- The soul is without a gender, without a species: thus, in this funeral journey, am I human, am I animal, am I object, idea?
Installation Views: “Vespula Vulgares“, 2019, Naturally fallen tree, wasp nests, surface-transducers, multi-channel media player, mono-amps, speaker cable, 5-channel audio-file, light gels. Courtesy artist and ChertLüdde, Berlin. All photos by Andrea Rossetti.
Opening reception 9 February 2019, 6:00 – 9:00 pm
Until 13 April 2019
Namsal Siedlecki (b. 1986, Greenfield, USA; lives and works in Seggiano, Italy) presents Gunbu, an exhibition featuring a new series of works inaugurating BUNGALOW, ChertLüdde’s small space dedicated to projects by young contemporary artists.
On the walls, four sculptures in the shape of a head are displayed. These forms are made from a 3D scan of a sculpture from the first century, conserved at the University of Edinburgh. The found artwork represents the young prince Siddhārtha, realized in the Gandhāra style native to Peshawar, an area situated between Pakistan and Afghanistan. The Gandhāra style is the result of different artistic regional influences: Indian, Persian and Hellenistic. It was not by chance that it was initially called Greek-Buddhist art. This particular sculpture depicts the face of Siddhārtha with the standard face lineaments of Greek sculptures.
Each head was first made in wax before being coated with copper using an electroplating process. The heads were immersed in electroplating tanks for several days, creating multiple metal layers. The first layer completely covered the sculpture with a layer of copper, after which subsequent layers were created by lifting the head gradually out of the liquid, until the stratifications of the metal altered the original shape.
Starting from a 3D reproduction of Siddhārtha’s original head, the shape has become forever modified through stratification. Similarly, layers of ideas and knowledge throughout the centuries have irreversibly affected humanity.
At the intersection of the gazes of the four sculptures, a copper stick descends from the ceiling, ending with four electrified copper sculptures. The form is in the shape of the Yartsa Gunbu, a mushroom that is highly sought after in China for its aphrodisiac qualities (also known as a natural ‘Himalayan Viagra’) and used in Chinese medicine for over 700 years. Yartsa Gunbu, meaning ‘summer grass, winter worm’ in Tibetan, is created when underground caterpillars become infected by a parasitic fungus, Ophiocordyceps sinensis. The fungus mummifies the caterpillar, the remains of which then pushes up and pops out of the ground in the spring. The Yartsa Gunbu is worth more than its weight in gold.
Human evolution over the centuries has been driven by the will to learn, generational knowledge accumulated over time. This continuous process of learning has allowed humanity to understand how to exploit for its benefit pre-existing elements in nature. Through a small electrical discharge, the Yartsa Gunbu become custodians of a seemingly nonexistent force, which can be revealed only through a conscious and respectful gaze.
Namsal Siedlecki (Greenfield, USA 1986), lives and works in Seggiano, Italy. In 2015 he won the fourth edition of the Moroso Award and he is a Cy Twombly Italian Affiliated Fellow in Visual Arts at the American Academy in Rome. His works was recently exhibited in venues such as: 6th Moscow International Biennale for Young Art, Moscow; Frankfurt am Main, Berlin; Galeria Boavista, Lisbon,; Villa Romana, Florence; Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Turin; Centro per l’Arte Contemporanea Luigi Pecci, Prato; American Academy in Rome, Rome; Villa Medici, Rome; Fondazione Bevilacqua la Masa, Venice; Moscow International Biennale for Young Art, Moscow; Antinori Art Project, Bargino; Galleria Magazzino, Rome; Galeria Madragoa, Lisbon; Frankfurt am Main, Berlin; Very Project Space, Berlin; Galleria Acappella, Naples; Cripta747, Turin.