The Kestner Gesellschaft is featuring the artist Roman Signer (*1938, Appenzell) in an extensive solo exhibition with new works mainly from the past three years. The diverse oeuvre of this internationally renowned Swiss sculptor will be presented with 13 sculptures and installations as well as five films on both floors of the exhibition venue.
International Archives 2nd half of 2018
Known for his explosive performances, the artist has been working on an expanded concept of sculpture since the early 1970s. Signer focuses on processes, material properties, and working with ordinary objects. His works thus show connections to conceptual art, Land Art, and Arte Povera. Signer augments the three dimensions of sculpture with a fourth: time. Using moving everyday objects such as a moving lawnmower and flying model helicopters, the passing of time and traces of past events are also made visible and tangible as metaphors for transience. The exhibition Roman Signer: New Works also features two walk-
In Roman Signer’s works, everyday objects appear as recurring motifs in new contexts, including specially prepared bicycles, flying buckets, dancing walking sticks, helicopters, and drones. The objects are not exhibited in their usual function, but in unusual and sometimes humorous arrangements. For instance, the installation Schirm (2016) features two fans that engage in a kind of dialogue through the opening and closing of an umbrella. The video work Dachlawine (2017) shows industrial barrels filled with water that come loose from their fixtures after a simultaneous blast and roll down a roof. After a great spectacle, what remains is the metal in a new form.
Physical forces—explosives, water power, or motors as well as the force of gravity—are front and center in Roman Signer’s works and reveal their sculptural potential. Thus focused, speed, power, and chronology become tangible. Viewers can understand time as movement in space. Especially in waiting for the predictable and the rapid change, time can be experienced in expansion and compression. Time also appears in traces of the past, as in Spur (2016), and as the possible future, as in Kajak (2016), which could roll through the exhibition space on two industrial barrels.
For the first time, two large, walk-
Curator: Christina Végh
Assistant Curator: Julika Bosch
© ArtCatalyse International / Marika Prévosto 2018. All Rights Reserved
Exhibition August 24 -
Roman Signer, Kajak mit blauen Fässern, 2016. Sculpture, 200 cm x 90 cm x 60 cm. Photo: Aleksandra Signer. Courtesy the artist