Exhibition by Alexandra Bircken
KINDL – Centre for Contemporary Art, Berlin, DE
19.09.2021 – 15.05.2022
Alexandra Bircken. Fair Game, 2021, Installation view Kesselhaus, KINDL – Centre for Contemporary Art, Berlin; Photo: Jens Ziehe, 2021
A central theme in Alexandra Bircken’s oeuvre is the shell. She examines skin, clothing, containers, and architecture in relation to their interior: organs, bones, and invisible functions. The artist creates sculptures and assemblages from diverse materials in which she explores the relationships between space, body, and shell, exposing the interior and examining our notions of corporeality, machines, and human beings.
Alexandra Bircken’s site-specific installation Fair Game (2021) in the Kesselhaus at the KINDL opens up diverse reference spaces ranging from hunting scenarios to battle paintings, and from political violence to laboratories and clubs, activating a wide variety of associations in visitors.
Bircken describes her current show, ‘Fair Game’ in Berlin, as a comment on the pandemic’s effect on club culture, and a ‘free interpretation’ of Samuel Beckett’s The Lost Ones (1971). In the Irish writer’s short story, 200 naked bodies – one per square metre – are contained in a cylinder called the ‘abode’. The lighting and temperature fluctuate drastically, resulting in blindness, skin problems and a climate hostile to sex. The floor and walls are made of rubber, deadening all sound. There are ladders and niches in the walls – some ‘lost ones’ climb ladders to nowhere, others, vanquished, remain on the floor. Beckett’s tale is a version of hell; Bircken’s nightmare doesn’t look far off – but in ‘Fair Game’, there’s more at play.
Curated by Kathrin Becker.
More information: www.kindl-berlin.com/bircken
Am Sudhaus 3