Artist: Michael Riedel
Venue: Francesca Pia, Zurich
Date: March 20 – May 9, 2009
Full gallery of images, press release and link available after the jump.
Images courtesy Gallery Francesca Pia, Zurich.
For several years now, Michael Riedel has been irritating the art world with his replicas of existing artworks, recreations of events, and facsimiles of architectural components of other exhibitions. He first drew international attention with his interventions at Oskar-von-Miller Strasse 16 in Frankfurt/Main. Between 2000 and 2004 Riedel, in cooperation with Dennis Loesch, organized events in which the two of them duplicated, among other things, artworks and exhibitions by artists such as Simon Starling, Rikrit Tiravanija and Jason Rhoades, which were on view in nearby institutions such as the Portikus exhibition hall.
In his first solo exhibition at Galerie Francesca Pia, Michael Riedel presents two groups of works which reference earlier interventions. Riedel’s contribution early last year to the group show Records Played Backwards at The Modern Institute in Glasgow consisted of a large piece of black cloth with the word “Modern” cut out. This and three additional holes created by turning the same piece of cloth around resulted in Vier Vorschläge zur Veränderung von Modern (Four Proposals for Changing Modern) in the logo of The Modern Institute. As a negative print, the white holes result in black marks to be read as yet other possible ways of writing “Modern.” That Riedel is less concerned with optimization than with change itself, is illustrated by recent work in which he takes up his own four proposals and derives from them sixteen additional proposals for changing Modern. Five of the sixteen large-scale canvases are on display in the exhibition.
The year 2008 saw the publication of the catalog Gedruckte und nicht gedruckte Poster 2003-08 (Printed and Unprinted Posters 2003-08) by Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther König, which assembles Riedel’s posters from that period, as well as additional material. The posters provide a record of Riedel’s own exhibition history and related events. Sound recordings and photographic images make up his material, the sheer abundance of which turns the documentary account into a collection of details, creating the impression of never-ending text production, of a history of description itself. Disfigured to the point of being unrecognizable, the creation of meaning originally intended is brought to the brink of meaninglessness. As a finale and a work in its own right, Galerie Francesca Pia shows eight of the 43 printed sheets used in the production of the catalog, which, with their random layout, serve to double the original posters.