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photokinetiks, or a short guide for the construction of meaning
constructing meaning in 3 steps (2010)

Frank Hülsbömer  »

photokinetiks, or a short guide for the construction of meaning

Exhibition: 5 Mar – 9 Apr 2011

WiE Kultur

Heidestrasse 52
10557 Berlin

+49 (0)30-55875829


Thu-Sat 12-18

photokinetiks, or a short guide for the construction of meaning
constructivists vacation (2009)

Frank Hülsbömer
photokinetiks, or a short guide for the construction of meaning

WiE Kultur | Berlin
March 5 - April 9, 2011

Can geometrical forms be something else from what they actually are? If yes, could they serve as basis for a new vade mecum apt to instruct us on how to construct meaning? This last question is the leading theme of "a short guide for the construction of meaning", the exhibition presenting the new works of Berlin based artist Frank Hülsbömer.

Using photography and video as art media, Hülsbömer depicts a parallel universe inhabited by minimally structured surfaces and forms in which all contradictions are admitted and - sometimes - happily unified. The artist's way of treating objects is both poetical and playful: it seems as though he is taking a step back in order to allow his objects to live and to develop their own life. Hülsbömer does not want to disturb the scenery he is looking at. Indeed, it appears as if the artist has just limited himself to the mere observation of the aesthetic scene he is in front of and then named it by taking recourse to his elegant and characteristic sense of irony.

At first sight, Hülsbömer's dynamic depictions of objects can arouse suspicions of just being computer renderings or 3D computer graphics. However his work surprisingly is subject to no other intervention except for the pure instrument of photography and the simple act of filming. Due to the clarity and minimalism of the work and the artist’s striking virtuosity of photographic technique, the viewer is led to think that Hülsbömer wants to reach a sort of visual perfection. Hülsbömer himself says that there is no attempt of portraying perfection in his work: “Perfection is just an idea, which people can only aim at.” Hülsbömer is attempting to demystify and simplify the phenomena of reality through a continuous reference to the dualism permeating our human experience.

In this attempt of simplification and demystification one is able to recognize a connection between Hülsbömer’s work and the artistic production of the group active in Germany in the decade before and after the WWII, known as Subjective Photography. The photographers belonging to this movement - Peter Keetman, Wolfgang Reisewitz, Otto Steinert and their students - were interested in pursuing a visual purism obtained through the exercise of formalist imagery.

Hülsbömer gives the results achieved within the Subjective Photography a new twist. This is made possible by the very personal interpretation of the media used to portray the geometric shapes by the artist who is not bound to the mere use of photography but crosses over to video art achieving a further fragmentation and reduction of the represented objects. Hülsbömer's original use of Photokinetiks, reminding the viewer of a zoetrope, in which the illusion of action comes from a rapid succession of static pictures giving the impression of a “vision held in suspension”, points out the change of the current state of affairs within the scenery intended by the artist as a metaphor for the human condition. Hülsbömer’s Photokinetiks has a narrative value that, although detached from the perceptual world and characterized by an extreme simplification, allows the spectator to reach a deeper understanding of reality which appears lyrical in its elementariness.

a short guide for the construction of meaning focuses on the strong tension between chance and science. This is a recurring theme in Hülsbömer’s work, already present, indeed, in his book The Fiction of Science. However, in his new work the artist shows an enhanced and matured treatment of the topic, which reaches a full-fledged mastery.

Borrowing from Gottlob Frege, Hülsbömer's works investigate the areas of sense and meaning, establishing a playful relationship with them: Can it be possible to find an unchangeable rule that allows humans to construct meaning? Is Hülsbömer in possession of it? The elegance, balance and minimalism that characterize his work seem to answer positively.

You are cordially invited to participate the opening on March 4th, from 6 to 9pm at WiE Kultur at Heidestrasse 52 in Berlin-Mitte, an art zone adjacent to the Hamburger Bahnhof Museum.

- Elisa Oddone guest curator

This exhibition will be accompanied by a catalogue in edition.
The earlier publication includes: the fiction of science (gestalten, 2009)

Selected solo exhibitions:
„the anatomy of surface“, side program of transmediale at M12, berlin (jan. 2008)
daz (deutsches architektur zentrum), berlin 2006
gallery „no good window“, paris (2005)
gallery magda danysz, paris (2003)
german pavilion at the „world expo“, hannover (2000)
deutsches haus/nyu, nyc

Selected group exhibitions:
picnic magazine group show at beit ha’ir museum, tel aviv. 30/12/2010 - 26/03/2011
"retrato berlin", museo nacional de bellas artes santiago, chile 16 Oct - 27 Dec 2009
palacio nacional de las artes-palais de glace, buenos aires/argentina 26 Oct - 03 Nov 2009
MFF media fassades festival berlin 2008. video projection at the "collegium hungaricum
“berlin:portrait” contemporary photography and video art from berlin. goethe institut washington dc/usa. aug-sept. 2007
“talking cities- die micropolitik des urbanen raumes”, essen/germany (aug.-dez. 2006)
instituto italiano di cultura di tokyo 18-22. dec. urban spaces, tokio (2006)
zkm, “making things public”, karlsruhe (2005)
festival transphotographiques, lille/france (2004)
“electrovillage” museum für angewande kunst, köln (2003)
bundeskunsthalle bonn, europäischer architekturfotografie-preis 2003
vitra museum/design mai, berlin (2003)
festival of visions with goethe institut, hong kong (2000)


March 5 - April 9, 2011
Public hours: Thursday-Saturday, 12:00-18:00

WiE Kultur GmbH
Heidestrasse 52, 10557 Berlin

Fon: +49 (30) 5587-5829
Fax: +49 (30) 5514-0771


photokinetiks, or a short guide for the construction of meaning
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photokinetiks, or a short guide for the construction of meaning
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