EARTH, t.b.a.
Curated by Vanessa Souli
24. April - 4. Juli 2021 


Participating artists:

Nadine Baldow (Installation / Sculpture)
Hendrik Czakainski (Installation / Sculpture)
Kai Löffelbein (Installation / Photography)
Jazoo Yang (Installation / Sculpture)
Shingo Yoshida (Video / Photography)

COVID-19, California Fires, Australian ecosystem collapse. What is going on in the world? Are we experiencing a new phase of human existence or are these terrifying phenomena still to be considered ‘natural’? How do we imagine our world to be like in some years from now and more importantly, how do we want our world to be in the future?
The exhibition EARTH, t. b. a. is to be understood as part of the Anthropocene exhibition series, conceived by curator Vanessa Souli, which explores the broader relationship of humans to their immediate, as well as global, natural and social environment. An unofficial term used to describe the current period in Earth’s history when human actions have a visible impact on the regulation of climate and the balance of ecosystems, the Anthropocene is an increasingly important concept that encompasses all aspects of human activity on Earth.
The project presents a series of scenarios of future life on Earth that oscillate between imagination and documentation. The selected works, which are mainly site-specific installations, are imaginary investigations of post-apocalyptic rural and urban landscapes as a result of human influence on nature and architecture. Specifically, the exhibition aims to generate a conversation around the following global issues:
• Environmental disasters and their impact on marginalised communities (climate change)
• Civilization waste of high-tech societies (e-waste)
• Cultural identity and memory in a globalised world (globalisation)
• Biological interventions in species (hybridisation)
As the main research focus of the respective artists, these questions open the dialogue through different interpretations of the motif of landscape.
Nadine Baldow ’s work (*1990 in Dresden, lives and works in Berlin) is primarily concerned with the complex relationship between ‘culture’ and ‘nature’ and their constant mutual influence. How can one differentiate between what is culture and what is nature? Who decides what is natural and what is culturally-imposed? Can our planet be considered pure nature as it looks today? In an effort to answer these questions, she creates imposing installations that ask sincere questions about the future of the species and humanity.

Hendrik Czakainski’s works (*1979 in Aurich, lives and works in Berlin) are sculptural and relief-like depictions of urban settlements, and otherworldly industrial sites marked by human-inflicted and natural destruction. However, one cannot assign these landscapes to a recognisable city or town. Czakainski’s works are more often than not fused with impressions from his own travels (primarily Southeast Asia) and translate the often negative excesses of our globalized and increasingly urbanized world into his own unique artistic language. In this way, Czakainski’s works evoke an aesthetic that walks a fine line between devastation and rebirth.

Kai Löffelbein (*1981 in Siegen, lives and works in Hanover) has worked on long-term projects in South America, Asia, Africa and Eastern Europe, in which he examines the effects of socio-political and economic actions on the population and the environment. In this exhibition, Löffelbein’s work focuses on the impact of the excess of e-waste produced by western ‘civilised’ countries on poorer, ‘developing’ nations.

Jazoo Yang (*1979 in South Korea, lives and works in Berlin) is primarily concerned with the transformation of entire neighborhoods due to gentrification. By gathering remnants of buildings, houses and places of cultural importance, she reinterprets cultural memory and identity. This debris consists of the lost fragments of urban life – pieces of plaster from the exterior walls of a building, scraps of wallpaper from an interior, the remains of antique tiles. By transforming these findings into sculptures, she fuses the old with the new, the distant with the proximate and a fading narrative with a lively one. In her sculptures, memory is retained as an artistic narrative, thus contributing to the preservation of cultural heritage.

Shingo Yoshida (*1974 in Tokyo, lives and works in France and Germany) is a Japanese interdisciplinary visual artist with focus on video and installation. Yoshida has been traveling around the world for his projects since the beginning of his career. His interest lies on examining ‘micro-communities’ as a way to understand the rules of how global society works. In doing so, he discovers how humble our existence is in comparison to the omnipotence of nature. Yet, his works always evoke a connection between human and environment. For this exhibition, he presents a dystopian video installation, portraying an abandoned area of the Chilenian urban landscape.

Vanessa Souli (*1992 in Athens, lives and works in Berlin) is a Berlin-based curator and writer. Since 2017, she has been curating projects in Germany and internationally while writing for established international magazines. One of her main curatorial interests is the Anthropocene and the impact of human on the environment. This exhibition is the second project of the series Anthropocene.
The concept aims to propose both a poetic and documentary narrative that emerges from different perspectives of the artistic imagination. Crises, like ours nowadays, show how fragile our realities can be and are therefore good opportunities to raise awareness for new, sustainable ideas. The planned exhibition therefore offers new visual representations of destruction and functions as a platform for the discussion of a sustainable future.
In Edward Burtynsky’s VR Experience, visitors are invited to explore the world of the Anthropocene Project through the eyes of photographer and Anthropocene expert Edward Burtynsky. Two films, ‚DANDORA‘ (6min, 7sec) and ‚IVORY BURN‘ (6 min, 36sec), will be presented alternately in the VR glasses. The curator will be present to guide you through the process.
The Anthropocene Project is a multidisciplinary body of work combining feature documentary, fine art photography, film, virtual reality, augmented reality, and scientific research to investigate human influence on the state, dynamic, and future of the Earth. Designed to open up a unique and complementary exploration of locations, ideas, and themes, the cinematic VR aims to create experiences that literally take viewers into the realities of the Anthropocene.
On April 31, 2016, the largest ivory burn in history took place in Nairobi National Park. Eleven pyres comprised of 105 tonnes of confiscated elephant tusks and 1.35 tonnes of rhinoceros horn were set on fire as a clarion call to halt all trade in ivory. The street value of the pyres was estimated to be between 105 and 150 million dollars — representing between 6,000 and 7,000 elephants. The Anthropocene Project team was there to capture this deeply symbolic and visceral message to the poaching and illegal trade syndicates, and to bear witness to the loss of animal life and the diversity it embodied.

Elephant Tusk Burn, Nairobi National Park, Kenya
Credit: Photo courtesy of Anthropocene Films Inc. © 2018
The Dandora Landfill is the largest of its kind in Kenya. It receives industrial, agricultural, commercial and medical waste, amounting to about 2,000 tonnes per day. It is estimated that more than a million people live in the vicinity of the landfill. Residents work informally, sorting scrap by hand and selling it to recycling plants on site. The plastic hills and canyons of Dandora represent not only an entirely human landscape but also an emerging microeconomy. Prolific and easy to obtain, waste plastic has become a resource on its own, to be mined and sold as source material. But so much of it cannot be re-used and will be left to congeal in landfills, spilling into our waterways and oceans, eventually forming a significant sediment layer in the strata of the planet, and marking the Anthropocene in geological time.

Dandora Landfill #3, Plastics Recycling, Nairobi, Kenya  2016
photo © Edward Burtynsky, courtesy Galerie Springer, Berlin /  Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto
Kindly supported by:

Jazoo Yang Solo Exhibition

“We were taught to be mindful of all that we saw upon the journey”
8 June 2021 - 27 June 2021
Open hours : 2 PM - 7 PM
Free admission
Location: Soma Art Space 300
(Address: Eylauer str.9, 10965, Berlin)

Jazoo Yang Solo Show, 'Site Collective'
Space K, South Korea 2019

Yang presents 20 new works in her solo show 'Site Collective' at Kolon Space K, predominantly paintings which were “constructed” out of debris collected from demolished buildings during the past two years - covering a vast geographical range spanning more than five countries and ten cities.

During her residencies (Busan, Berlin, Paris, London), Yang visited various urban peripheries as well as decaying, neglected city areas, gathering layers of old wall paint and pieces of broken tile while there. 

 In Site Collective these seemingly insignificant 'materials' collected from the streets are transformed into artistic objects exhibiting intrinsic value.
 Bits of discarded material believed to be worthless in value are displayed in the form of paintings suddenly exhibiting their own historical meaning. 
 By being framed and solidified with resin these shattered pieces cannot simply be reproduced again by a mechanical process.

 In the contemporary urban landscape continuously under threat from encroaching gentrification, Yang delves deeper into the problem of loneliness and it’s resulting isolation.
Through her work, audiences can reconsider the “worth” of urban debris with transformed notions of time and space.  

 - Space K, 2019 

'Stolen Time', Solo Show

Maison de l’Architecture Franche-Comté, 

Besançon, France 2018

Bien Urbain Festival

Photo by © Elisa Murcia Artengo 

Installation work using collected materials from Besancon, France

solo show @ Maison de l’Architecture Franche-Comté, France 2018

Group Show 'Silver Sehnsucht'

Experimental B-side to London Frieze Art Fair

at the Silver Building, London, UK 


work by :
Brad Downey, Christian Jankowski, Christine Sun Kim, Christopher Stead, Helena Hunter and Mark Peter Wright, James Bridle, Jazoo Yang, Khadija Von Zinnenbug Carroll, Mark Salvatus, Poklong Anading, Paola Torres Nunez Del Prado, Rosana Antoli, William Mackrell

Opening party performances by:
Mark Leckey, Trevor Jackson, Latete Atoto, Rory Bowens

" Jazoo Yang’s _Specimens of the Street [Materials_ series] are an amalgamation of the diverse, the distant, and the disregarded. Formed of the lost fragments of urban life that Yang rescues before their inevitable disappearance – remnants of a buildings’ outer walls, scraps of wallpaper from an interior, the remains of antique tiles – these often silent, ignored objects are here magnified from the mundane, framed to acknowledge the immensity of the intimate. Yet what we see in Yang’s works could easily have been taken from the space in which they hang. The chipped surfaces of the Silver Building will soon be smoothed and glossed over, removing any trace of its current state of decay. Yang’s works, however, show how the past, present and future are fused in the very materiality of these walls. "
-Rafael Schacter ( Creative Direcor, Curated shows @ Tate Modern, Somerset House )

More info >> https://www.itsnicethat.com/articles/silver-sehnsucht-art-270917

Group show 

'Increasingly Deeper Layers of the Past'

at Gallery Boan1942, Seoul 2017

Impovisational installation  
using found objects in burned house near gallery Boaninn
Increasingly Deeper Layers of the Past 2017

Solo show 'Re-born' 

at Gallery Boaninn, Seoul 2017

Depths rather than Representation 

- Hyunjeong Woo (Independent Curator)

An artist is a being that fights him or herself. Attempts to create something that did not exist before turned into struggles to undo things that existed before. An act of drawing thus becomes an act of erasing, a shape buried in the bottom of the picture can hardly be seen in the eyes of the viewer.

Today what matters most on canvas is a texture, in other words, the surface. Clement Greenberg defended that “the next step in the denial of illusion was to lift the extraneous elements above the surface of the picture and secure the effects of depths and volume by bringing this or that part of picture physically close to the eye, as in bas-relief.” [1]

In this regard, David Joselit expanded the appearance of flat surface painting into a realm of viewer’s ‘psychological response’, focusing on what triggers viewers to change their attitudes towards having a sensible experience, instead of pointing out how viewers distinguish a subject from another. [2]

Nonetheless to say, the starting point of the change derives from the artist’s act of recoding her own mind. The artist freely applies various media from conté and acrylic to industrial materials, such as cement, revealing her abiding interests in the creation and the extinction of a city.

The traces of the past that can never be completely gone, wooden materials found in piles of ruins that became part of the installation, and the iron frames wrapped around canvas are all balanced well with the exhibition space. In the midst of scraping off of what she drew with a carving tool, the artist intuitively realized, at some point, that there was nothing she can do more.

The fact (or belief) that a work happens to be completed regardless of the artist’s intention or plan is what distinguishes the Wall series from the previous work. First and foremost, this nearly impossible task to entirely separate oneself from one’s work seems to have achieved its goal to some degree through the instantly appearing energy inside and outside the canvas.

[1] Clement Greenberg, "Review of the Exhibition Collage", in The Nation, 27 November 1948, reprinted in Geenberg, The Collected Essays and Criticism: Volume 2: Arrogant Purpose, 1945-1949, ed. John O'Brain(Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1986), p.260.

[2] (Zoya Kocur (editor), Simon Leung (editor), Jiwon Seo (translator), Theory in Contemporary Art since 1985 (Seoul: Doosan Donga), re quoted from p.288)

재현 대신 깊이

독립 큐레이터 정현우

아티스트는 자신과의 싸움을 하는 존재이다전에 없던 것을 만들어내기 위하여 고군분투하던 노력은 전에 있던 것을 지우려는 몸부림으로 변화하였다그리는 행위는 곧 지우는 행위가 되며 형상은 화면 아래에 묻혀 관람자의 눈에 잘 띠지 않는다이제 캔버스에서 중심이 되는 부분은 매체의 질감 즉 표면이다

클레멘트 그린버그(Clement Greenberg)는 환영을 부인하는 다음 단계는 회화의 표면 위에 외적인 요소들을 쌓아 올리고마치 저부조(bas-relief)에서처럼 회화의 이 부분 또는 저 부분을 물리적으로 눈에 가깝게 가져옴으로써 깊이와 양감의 효과를 확보하는 것이라는 말로 재현을 벗어난 회화 작업의 심리적 깊이를 옹호했다. 이에 대해 데이비드 조슬릿(David Joselit)은 평면 회화의 등장을 관람객의 심리적 반응으로 확장시키는 데작품을 감상하는 사람들이 대상을 식별하는데 치중하기보다 감각적인 경험을 하는 방향으로 태도가 변화되는 지점에 주목하였다. 

물론 변화의 시작점은 작가의 심리를 기록하는 행위에 있다작가는 콩테와 아크릴에서부터 시멘트와 같은 산업자재를 자유롭게 구사하며 도시의 생성과 소멸에 대한 작가의 지속적인 관심을 표출한다완벽하게 사라지지 못하는 과거의 흔적들폐허에서 건져 올린 목재는 설치 작업의 일부분이 되었고 캔버스를 감싸는 철 프레임의 묵직함이 전시 전체 공간의 균형을 맞춘다자신이 그린 부분을 조각 도구를 활용해 긁어내는 와중에 작가는 더 이상 손 댈 수 없는 순간을 직감으로 인지한다고 했다작품이 작가의 의도 또는 계획과는 상관없이 완성된다는 사실(혹은 믿음)이야말로 Wall 시리즈가 이전 작업과 차별되는 지점이라 할 수 있다

무엇보다도 작가 자신과 작업을 철저하게 분리하려는 이 불가능에 가까운 시도는 캔버스 안과 밖에서 즉각적으로 나타나는 에너지를 통해 어느 정도 성과를 얻은 듯 보인다.

Jazoo Yang x Haku Sungho

 'Lost in this moment'
Gallery Unofficial Preview, Seoul 2013

Sponsored by
Seoul Foundation for Arts and Culture, Arts Council Korea

The velocity of cities is higher than that of human bodies. Thus a man's body is forced to fit into the flow of large cities in order to keep their lives within. In that violent circumstance, the delicacy of sense a man possesses easily fades away into oblivion. Recall your memory of when you find yourself-unexpectedly and against your will-lost in flows of long-forgotten memories as you sense a certain smell, taste, or momentary visual stimuli. The unconscious sense which once engraved in your body at a certain moment of life demolishes layers of history of the time and emerges in between the cracks. What is the earliest state of human body as a sensory agent? What could one do in trying regaining that even minute sensitivity?

A sight of deserted houses in brownfield sites is a lump of fragmented images of previous residents’ symbolic traces, their past, and reality that now submerged into their memories and subconscious. Broken and torn down spaces in a city that are subjected to renewal, violent transformation of spaces surrounding people living in big cities; Yang and Haku participating in this exhibition 'LOST IN THIS MOMENT' locate their bodies in states of hypersensitive organisms in order to understand their sensual reactions to their surroundings in detail. It is their keen practice to elicit their memories of genuine senses. And one of the biggest significances of this exhibition is to present their artistic and sensual results of their extremely individual expression on the subject of urban redevelopment projects. 

도시의 속도는 인간의 신체속도보다 빠르게 흘러간다. 그렇기에 그 공간 안에 위치한 사람의 몸은 강제적으로 대도시의 흐름에 맞춰지고 있다. 그 폭력적 상황 속에서 몸이 가진 감각의 세밀함은 쉽게 망각된다. 예상치 않은 어느 특정한 상황에서, 냄새, , 찰나적인 시각의 기억들이 자신의 이성적 의지와 상관없이 순간적으로 아득하게 되살아나는 경험을 떠올려보자. 삶의 어느 순간에 신체의 기억으로 각인되었던 무의식적인 감각이, 그 때의 경험 이후로 빠르게 진행되어온 시간의 층위를 파괴하고 그 균열의 틈을 비집고 나오는 것이다

원래의 감각은 무엇인가, 그리고 그 감각을 온전히 느끼는 상태로 다시 태어나기 위해서 개인은 무엇을 할 수 있는가

재개발을 기다리며 허물어져가는 폐가는 그 곳에서 생활을 꾸렸던 사람들의 흔적에 관한 기호적 기억의 파편화된 이미지이며
, 과거이며, 동시에 무의식으로 가라앉은 현실이다. 부서지고 헐어지고 다시 새롭게 들어서는 도시의 공간들, 대도시의 사람들을 둘러싸고 벌어지는 공간들의 변형. 이번 전시를 기획한 두 명의 젊은 작가는 그 공간에 대한 반응을 보다 감각적인 것에 집중하여 이해코자 자신들의 신체를 극도로 예민한 유기체로 위치시킨다. 자신을 둘러싼 자극에 반응하는 순수감각의 기억을 끌어내려는 치열한 작업인 것이다. 재개발이라는 주제를 초개인적인 방식으로 표현하는 예술적감각적 결과물을 선보이는 것이 이번 전시의 가장 큰 의의다

3세로 도쿄에서 자라 활동하고 있는 haku sungho와 서울을 중심으로 활동하고 있는 양자주, 두 작가는 대도시라는 공통의 테마를 공유하고 표현하는 것이 이번 전시의 목적이라 말한다. 이번 전시는 한-일 양국의 특수한 역사성을 배경으로 삼고 있지 않다. 두 작가 모두 출생 도시 이외의 다양한 대도시를 경험하였으며 그 과정에서 ‘대도시’라는 공간과 공공성에 대해 의문을 품게 되었다. 수많은 재생과 폐기가 인간의 감각 속도를 넘어서 반복적으로 일어나고 있는 장소에서 우리가 얼마만큼 자신의 삶에 대해 명확히 인식하고 선택의 주체가 되고 있는 가에 대한 질문이 그 한 예이다

-  박일휘 Ilhwi Park ( Unofficial Preview, Seoul )