press release

Galerie Diana Stigter presents the first solo exhibition I missed the part where that’s my problem by Norwegian artist Matias Faldbakken. Faldbakken (1973) is artist and author. He lives and works in Oslo. Under the pseudonym Abo Rasul he published two novels: The Cocka Hola Company and Macht und Rebel, both translated in German. The books are part of his yet unfinished Misanthropy Trilogy. The third part will be published next year.

His conceptual work is not suitable for a quick esthetical experience. Using commodities and prints, often with text, Faldbakken questions current ways of signifying and representing. Influences from Pop and Minimal Art are visible, at the same time the work is clearly rooted in contemporary society where violence, spectacle and meaninglessness compete with each other. Faldbakken abstains from any moral judgement but his work, however funny sometimes, doesn’t bring a cheerful message. Works like "16:9", "Untitled (Stack of Film Cans)" and "Untitled (Videotape)" focus on the side products of the culture industry. The two aluminium bars refer to the two black beams you see on a television screen when a widescreen movie is shown. The empty film cans are the fundaments of the real product. So the leftovers are presented here as autonomous objects, turning the process of signifying 180 degrees up side down and at the same time emphasizing emptiness. The prints with the words "Representation” and its anagram “No Reaper sent it" play with the arbitrariness of the agreement on signification and representation.

Faldbakken is interested in the way art and artist can participate in the process of power, knowledge and order. His art illustrates differences and similarities between mainstream and underground, the commercial and the independent and investigates the possibilities of the intervention of art in everyday life.

Matias Faldbakken studied at the National Academy of Fine Art in Bergen, Norway and at the Städelschule in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. He presented Norway in the Nordic Pavilion at the Venice Biennale in 2005. His work was also part of the Populism show in the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam. Gallery Standard Oslo will do a solo with Faldbakken on Art Basel 2007.

(Manon Braat)


Matias Faldbakken