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20.01.2006 - 17.03.2006, Karlsruhe
Für ein Leben nach dem Tod
We are pleased to present the third solo exhibition by Korpys/Löffler in our gallery. Their work has been shown most recently in Wilhelm Lehmbruck Museum in Duisburg, in Städtische Galerie Nordhorn and in Kunstwerke in Berlin.
The artist duo Andree Korpys and Markus Löffler use their work to analyse structures and lieus of power. They often use political occurrences which take place in non-public, disclosed areas as raw material for their films, which can be interpreted neither as pure documentary nor as exposé film.
The focus tends toward unnoticed details, indirect hierarchy codes are represented by buildings and people. The contextual and associative investigation of correlations is amplified by photography, drawing and sculpture.
The show “For a life after death” presents the same-titled film, which documents the artist’s experiences posing as a journalist in the Vatican for a year. Selected scenes in the center of the Catholic Church display the construction of spirituality through the repetitive rituals and activities of Catholicism. A portrait of the contemporary Roman-Catholic Church, and the last months in the life of the Pope John Paul II is developed. The sound, consisting of litanies and choral singing, divine an ostensibly monotonous intellectual world, which is ruptured by the ambivalence of its commandments and their violations.
Five large ink drawings narrate central events in the history of Catholicism and St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome.
In the manner of a storyboard the drawing “Audienzhalle” delineates central figures of the Vatican, for instance the cardinal chamberlain, the state secretary, the medical attendant or the commandant of the Swiss Guard, who are involved in crimes like the assassination of John Paul II.
Another drawing suggests the facility of the church’s influence on Christian iconography, which can be read as the origin of pictorial cult. The deliberate damaging of Michelangelo’s Pietà by Laszlo Toth in 1972 is exemplary. He committed this crime because the painting portrayed a scene in which a mother’s sublime beauty triumphs over her son’s death.
St. Peter’s Basilica, where Michelangelo’s destroyed Pieta is kept, was constructed on top of a necropolis, a city of the dead, which still exists and is partially accessible. It was here that Saint Peter’s mortal remains were searched for repeatedly, and their discovery was annunciated by Pope Paul VI in 1968. Nevertheless, a second skull proclaimed to be St. Peter’s is still enthroned over the papal altar in the Lateran basilica. The drawing “Bomarzo” shows the entrance to hell, a dining room in the holy forest of Count Orsini. This is a kind of early adventure park from the era of Mannerism, in which curiosities and chimeras served the purpose of amusement and animation for visitors. This park can be understood as an early countermovement to the Catholic Church.
The artists integrate themselves into their drawings repeatedly, as if they were contemporary witnesses, quiet observers or playing minor parts in the story. This allows them to create a peculiar narrative position, which correlates things and occurrences ingenuously. Opinions and partisanships give way into alleged morally and ideologically grounded behaviour patterns, which dissolve into displacements and suspensions, blurring the line between belief and knowledge.
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Für ein Leben nach dem Tod, 2006