Too Much Data
by Tenzing Barshee
Summer 2016, email: I was really in a positive mood.
In “jmseradzfghdsjkfhbycmxcfnbkladshj”, his third one-person exhibition at Societé, Kaspar Müller presents painted, printed and assembled materials.
It took one whole year, this fucked up, fantastic year, to make these works. How do you look at a worldlike this? Through flags maybe. The mood is rotten, levelled by material density. Two or three colors, on par with each other, too much data. There is clearly a distance, the length of projection, which allows to place pleasure next to melancholia.
Over summer the artist moves his studio and consequently reduces his work space to a fifth of its volume. The clothmaker who sublets the new place leaves a sewing machine, a loom, and some sewing patterns hanging on the wall. The most evident things easily become the most inadequate ones. Football, Brexit or smoking weed; it’s just paint on canvas, under the rule of the squeegee.
It isn’t really preferable to read the signs of our time as styles and vice versa, it isn’t attractive to read at all. The signs, which signify knowledge and heritage, are eliminated. Books and flags. Something to say: the plumage of collectivity.
There is an inclination to buy canvas. Burlap, cotton and linen are on sale.
There is an inclination to apply a sense of responsibility—never more than two or three hours consecutively, in between these hot summer bike rides and ice cream, every day from Moabit to Wedding with public radio announcements, anachronistic propaganda formats, avoiding dumb European roaming costs on a smart phone, the return of the 30-minutes news cycle.
Sunbathing in ambivalent anarchy, those colors, a Swiss make, are inadequate. Those joyful, jolly colors, are colorant tools after all, a smeared state of affairs. The effect of potential and abstraction lies somewhere far beyond these picture planes, somewhere behind the sun.
This exhibition sums up a collection of events, one summer, one year, a European competition. Flags on the moon. Flags everywhere. How do the news relate? Various incoming reports on the results from multiple parallel worlds. It’s a thoughtless way to work, nothing elaborate, a plain depiction, and a more permeable way to perform that Lee Lozano-thing, an already made call-back to an older work;
fresh, runny water, this waste & hope, stuck up and in the sticks.
How to mix what you see at acrylic speed? Flags, rainbow colors and a fresh hammer-and-sickle graffiti somewhere on a fenced playground. That’s manageable, and perhaps surprisingly contemporary because this is the present, partly. That is the whole range of our present.
This exhibition attempts to delineate the world with oversimplified technique, incorporating a crass inadequacy, which, in its life-size model form, purports both fallacy and sovereignty through a hot pile of assumptions, quotes, allegations, proposals, shared understandings, misconstructions, comparisons, intrusions, and other fantasies, which fail to neither ratify nor deny what’s really what.
The last painting hanging could have said: Keep calm and الله أكبر.
Recently, Kaspar Müller exhibited old books, bicycles and big words in different exhibitions.
There might be enough time to let these ideas dry overnight.