The art prize of the Karl-Heinz Knoedler Foundation 2019 was awarded to the artist – label Müller & Sohn (Irene Müller and Diethard Sohn) for their video installation “Land gewinnen”. In addition to the artist duo Müller & Sohn, two other artists Hyunjeong Ko, Julia Smirnova, were awarded the art prize.
The members of the jury were:
Albrecht Briz (Artist Heidenheim/Steinheim)
Dr. Florian Härle (art historian Goethe University Frankfurt)
Romy Range (Managing Director, Künstlerhaus Stuttgart e.V.)
The awarding of the art prize took place in the context of the VII Ellwanger Art Exhibition. The exhibition is organized by the Kunstverein and supported by the city of Ellwangen.
We would like to thank all our supporters and all those involved. We are very happy about this award… But we are also pleased to have met so many friendly, committed and art-interested people in connection with this exhibition, without whose commitment an art exhibition of this quality would not have been possible. The Kunstverein is a great added value for the city of Ellwangen, for us artists and for the state of Baden-Württemberg.
Irene Müller and Diethard Sohn
The works of all exhibiting artists are illustrated in a very high-quality catalogue. An essay on “Art in Times of Perplexity” by Dr. Florian Härle and written dialogues between him and the respective prizewinners expand the view of the exhibition. The catalogue is available for 15 euros at Kunstverein Ellwangen.
Here is an excerpt from the live interview, which took place during the award ceremony in addition to the catalogue:
Dr. Florian Härle: “In the historical record of the first moon landing, land is also marked with a flag, land is won… Do you have any indications as to whether this moon landing took place or not? Is the line between truth and illusion narrower?
Müller & Sohn (Diethard Sohn): “Evidence – yes, proof – no. We weren’t there, but we were indirectly eyewitnesses. My siblings, children from the neighbourhood and me. We all sat together in our parents’ living room and watched Armstrong walk on the moon as the first man on TV. Everything in black and white. Of course, we don’t know if this was just a good production from a Hollywood studio. But let’s assume that the moon landing took place. Much more interesting is that in the heads of us children everything that was black and white on the moon was.
So at least we realize that reality and illusion are very close.”
Interim translation: Deep L
VII. Art Exhibition Ellwangen 2019 with juried works
20 October – 15 December 2019
Clemens Baiker / Christine Braun / Karin Brosa / Simone Fezer / Jorinde Fischer / Petra Frey / Birte Horn / Hyunjeong Ko / Lola Läufer / Müller & Sohn (Irene Müller und Diethard Sohn) / Christa Munkert / Julia Smirnova / Meng Zhang
Sunday, 20 October 2019, 11 a.m.
Roland Hasenmüller, Board of Directors Kunstverein
TBA, City of Ellwangen
Saturday 14.00 – 17.00 o’clock
Sundays and public holidays 10.30 – 16.30 hrs
Admission: 3,00 Euro
Reduced: 2,00 Euro
Müller & Sohn will be represented in the exhibition:
”könnte aber doch” – WKV Stuttgart (updated title)
Cover picture: Müller & Sohn from the perspective of a find.
Exhibition of the artists’ members
August 24 – September 22, 2019
Opening: Friday, August 23, 2019, 7 p.m.
”könnte aber doch” – WKV Stuttgart Topic
The present has always been the past. It is experienced collectively and at the same time personally. It manifests itself through actions in public and private, political and poetic, measurable and felt here and now. The present, when it comes to light as a supposedly objective past – as for example in historiography – is marked by the realism of “hard” facts. That even historiography is only a narrative that is neither factual nor all-encompassing, but rather ideological, shaped by power relations, dominant interests and equally subjective and aesthetic language forms*, is often ignored. Moreover, the present is always the future. And the more it shrinks to ever smaller units of time, which we call progress and/or growth, the more the horizon seems to darken over what was and what is to come: let us think only of the shifts in the global climate. Nothing that is or was, however, is necessarily as it is or was. It could also be/have been quite different.
“If there is a sense of reality, there must also be a sense of possibility,” writes Robert Musil in The Man without Qualities (1930), summarizing this as follows:
“The one who possesses it [the sense of possibility], for example, does not say: Here this or that happened, will happen, must happen; but he invents: Here could, should or must happen; and when one tells him of anything that it is as it is, then he thinks: Well, it could probably be different. So the sense of possibility could almost be defined as the ability to think everything that might be just as good and not to take what is more important than what is not”.
But the subjunctive “could nevertheless” tears a gap that is as creative as it is critical into the present, a gap that couples what has been with what is to come, that is, with a future of which we cannot yet know anything.
The Fridays for Future demonstrations are carried by a generation that, as the older generation often claims, lacks life experience. What these young people demand and demand back is a future, a life experience yet to come, which is currently being taken away from them. They accuse a generation that, despite or because of its critical thinking, has become accustomed and adapted to those economic, industrial, military and political conditions that can completely destroy any future livelihood. The sense of possibility that this insurrection offers us is aimed at breaking with the seemingly factual and at the demand that “everything that could be just as good should be thought of and that which is should not be taken more seriously than that which is not”.
Do what? Art has many examples ready, which in a critical, ironic, poetic, political and/or activist way create alternative world models in which past and future are reinvented as possibilities. This year’s exhibition of the artist members of the Württembergischer Kunstverein aims to trace this potential and therefore asks for submissions by June 30, 2019 (postmark). What is in demand are works that revolve around how what is or was could also be different in a variety of ways and with a variety of means.
*The American historian Hayden White analyzed historiography as a literary genre and divided it into the rhetorical figures of metaphor, metonymy, synekdoch, and irony. See: Hayden White, Metahistory: The Historical Imagination of the 19th Century in Europe, Frankfurt am Main 1991 (Original: 1973).
A fairly accurate report by Julia Lutzeyer about the exhibition in the Stuttgarter Zeitung