I had the pleasure of discovering this fresh gallery. It just opened, this is its first exhibition. This privately owned gallery is situated a short walk from Blaak metro station in Rotterdam, in what used to be a Volkswagen garage, now tastefully designed to be the gallery Garage Rotterdam.
All works in "Hermetic City" are related to architecture, some even are architecture. Architecture becomes art or art becomes architecture. Most structures are uninhabited, the only one inside are you or your imagination. The buildings are isolated, preserved, hermetic. Here are highlights from each of the participating artists:
Erik Sep: Liberty City
This is a perfect scale model of a building. If the building has existed, we do not know. While usually scale models are used for presenting how great a building are or will be, this is the opposite. The installation show how much a building can detoriate and still be a building, still contain some kind of beauty. Here are decay, missing floors, graffiti (here seen as vandalism?), leaks and fallen materials. The building is in a shape few would like to preserve it, it is in a transition between existence and non-existence.
Dirk Zoete: Houses on stage
Zoete displays detailed drawings of different structures. In this drawing several buildings are on display together with building tools and props. But instead of being containers of objects, here the buildings are the objects on display. They are presented in a glass dome like stuffed animals, or caged like birds. Bhe buildings serve no purpose anymore except being objects for viewing.
Alexa Meyerman: 11:30 AM
These are photographic prints of buildings on transparent layers. This creates the illusion of depth from photographs, it transforms 2D into 3D.
Jasper de Beijer: The Recollector
Create your own walk through an abandoned building. Sculptures and photos are on display in the different halls, leaving the feeling that this has been a museum or a palace. The visuals and technology of video games are used, but here there is no task, no missions to attend to. You just walk through the building hearing only your own virtual footsteps, with that eerie notion of somebody watching you or hiding from you. The presence of other humans is apparent, but you never see anyone.
Sandro Setola: Beachhouse (night)
Models and drawings of buildings, especially beachhouses. The artist uses the techniques of architects, both scale models and technical drawings. Buth the creations do not resemble architecture at all, rather organic objects and phenomenons like sea shells and waves.
Renato Nicolodi: Monuments aux Morts
The sculptures resemble bunkers or mausoleums of totalitarian rule. They are dark, inaccessible and dominating structures. These buildings are for keeping everybody out and preserving the inside. Nobody will ever know what is inside. Maybe not even their creator.
Inti Hernández: Bridging Difference
Three architectural models. The two opposites are also opposites in shape, one downward and one upward kind of public stage or viewing point. Both are reflected in the central key piece that consist of half of both. Both halves see like a whole because of the mirror, but do not function as a whole. Only in your imagination are both halves whole.
Georg Bohle: City 7
The chaotic structure of an old town or a favela is taken to the maximum. The structure of a self-grown city has been growing without any borders. The uniform exterior of one building is repeating itself like exponential cell-growth, into an uncontrollable creature. Just like nobody can take control over the Brazilian favela.