April 28 - Juni 23, 2012
In the context of this year’s Gallery Weekend Berlin, parallel to its exhibition of works by British concept artist Victor Burgin, Galerie Thomas Schulte will be showing a new neon work by Chilean artist Alfredo Jaar in the gallery’s Corner Space. The lettering in his latest work, Kultur=Kapital, makes reference to Joseph Beuys’ claim "kunst=kapital". Throughout his oeuvre, Beuys repeatedly engaged with the issue of how art co-shaped society and politics, and was of the opinion that the creativity of each individual person represented the capital, and with it also the potential, of a society. Ultimately, Beuys condensed his complex theories in a formulaic equation that, in the form of multiples, became the bearer of his ideas.
The exhibition opens with Burgin’s work of 1972 Performative-Narrative, where he first introduces the element of narration that has characterised his work ever since. The hermeticism of early conceptualism is nevertheless evident in the rigorously recursive formal structure of this piece. Burgin’s narrative turn soon brought politics into his consideration. In his post-conceptual works up to 1976 - perhaps best exemplified in his street posters from this period - politics is defined mainly in Marxian terms of economic class. The influence of the women’s movement subsequently led him to engage with the politics of gender.
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