MIES IN MIND – Jose Dávila & Alicja Kwade 20 – 22 AUGUST 2021
Mies van der Rohe's buildings have influenced post-war architecture like few others. The Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin is an impressive testimony of his architectural vision. Little known is the fact that it was Werner Düttmann, then Senate Building Director of West Berlin, who invited van der Rohe to design the building. It is the same Düttmann who would have celebrated his 100th birthday this year and whose Brutalist buildings, including St. Agnes Church – home of KÖNIG GALERIE-, still shape the Berlin cityscape today.
Van der Rohe's buildings are characterized by a constructive logic that explores the relationship between proportions, physical forces, and material, a principle that can also be found in the artistic practice of Mexican artist Jose Dávila. Trained as an architect himself, he seems to constantly question physical laws in his works. Like van der Rohe, who did not disguise his steel and glass constructions, he openly presents the materials he uses, such as glass, steel girders, stones, or concrete, along with their properties, whether solid or porous, transparent or opaque. Artist and architect alike focus on clear lines and open structures. In the context of van der Rohe's buildings, the architectural quality of Dávila's work becomes particularly evident.
Alicja Kwade's sculptures are an exploration of three-dimensional space and the parameters of our perception. In her latest series of works, Alicja Kwade creates mobiles for the first time, which in were introducied into art history especially through Alexander Calder in the 1930s. Like Calder, Kwade also uses a movable metal construction that allows the individual elements of the mobile to float freely in the air. But Kwade once again challenges the visual experience of the viewer by attaching massive cobblestones to thin metal threads, which in their materiality are the exact opposite of Calder's delicate sculptures. The balanced arms of the mobile are kept in motion by physical forces. In addition, the visitors can move around the sculpture. Together, this results in a seemingly endless number of perspectives.
MIES IN MIND is an exhibition parcours for the reopening of the Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin organized by INDEX Berlin.
Friday-Saturday: 11 AM – 7 PM Sunday: 10 AM - 6 PM