press release

Opening: Thursday, September 18, 2008, 7 p.m.

Artist talk: Daniela Zyman with Klaus Weber Thursday, September 18, 2008, 6 p.m.

In his first major solo show in Austria the Berlin-based artist Klaus Weber is introducing work from the last few years, including works specially conceived for the exhibition, in which he lends the main space of the Secession the character of a living organism. Light, sound and smell play a supporting role and sensually interweave the various objects with the space. Exemplary for this is the new work SONNENORGEL, which serves as the "central organ". For this, Klaus Weber has had a heliostat installed and a number of glass panels replaced on the roof of the Secession to send unfiltered sunlight into the space and, directed by a pile of mirrors, to light the other artworks like spots. In this way he not only invisibly brings the outdoors into the space but also deconstructs the white cube of the Secession and lays the architectural structure open.

Klaus Weber conceives works across various media and spatial units which are frequently based on complex technological interconnections and intricately organised production processes. However, by deliberately manipulating everyday structures, the tracing of deviations and the exploration of the impossible they undermine the metaphorical and actual power of a functionalist rationality.

In doing this Klaus Weber repeatedly resorts to images of nature, and explores the sustainable potential of the not-tobe- tamed in a thoroughly humorous, anarchic manner. This characterises the fungi, the pavement mushrooms, that are capable of breaking through an asphalt surface(UNFOLDING CUL-DE-SAC) as much as the fountain filled with homeopathic LSD (PUBLIC FOUNTAIN LSD HALL). Klaus Weber addresses our social imagination through the combination of cultivated, political and public forces with uncontrollably and wildly expanding rhizome-like phenomena. What is generally considered to have rebellious or dubious connotations, i.e. an autonomy that eludes permanent control by the state and society, appears constructive. As a result, the artist subversively reinterprets the loss of control which is negatively perceived in the informed Western world with its marked inclination towards repression.

This is the background before which the strategic moment inscribed in the work of Klaus Weber by the integration of the sensual, the atmospheric, the absurd and the organic is revealed. The aim is to expand awareness and, as instruments for escape, as catalysts and filters to add dynamic to the work's setting, to temporarily lift the dominant cultural and social consensus.

The exhibition is accompanied by a catalogue with contributions by Alex Farquharson and Clemens Krümmel, among others (German/English).

KLAUS WEBER, born 1967 in Sigmaringen, lives and works in Berlin. SOLO SHOWS (Selection): 2008 Klaus Weber, Secession, Vienna; 2007 Shape of the Ape, Andrew Kreps Gallery, New York; The Big Giving, Hayward Gallery, London; 2006 The Big Giving (small group), Herald St Gallery, London; 2005 Allee der Schlaflosigkeit, Kunstverein in Hamburg; Der Geist ist ein Wasserfall, MAMA Showroom, Rotterdam; 2004 sick fox , Andrew Kreps Gallery, New York; Unfolding Cul de Sac, Cubitt Gallery, London. GROUP SHOWS (Selection): 2008 der blinde Fleck, NGBK, Berlin; Manifesta 7, Trentino; Kabul 3000 (love among the cabbages), Gallery Zero..., Milan; 2007 design by accident, croy nielsen Galerie, Berlin; The Object is the Mirror, Layr Wuestenhagen Contemporary, Vienna; memorial to the Iraq War, Institute of Contemporary Art, London; syntropia, NGBK, Berlin; 2006 FASTER! BIGGER! BETTER!, ZKM-Karlsruhe; You'll Never Know: Drawing and Random Interference, Hayward Gallery, London; After Cage. Künstlerinterventionen, Nationaal Jenevermuseum, Hasselt; 2005 Ecstasy. In and About Altered States, MOCA, Los Angeles; Not a drop but the Fall, Künstlerhaus Bremen, The Imaginary Number, Kunstwerke Institute for Contemporary Art, Berlin; Communism, Project Arts Centre, Dublin.

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Klaus Weber