Moltkerei Werkstatt e.V.

Moltkestr. 8 (im Hof) - D 50674 Köln

Yaël KEMPF Thanx 4 Coming

Opening | Thursday, December 5th, 2019 | 7 to 9pm

Exhibition | December 6th - 15th, 2019

on Saturdays and Sundays | 3 to 6pm

& by appointment +49 1577 407 6633

With her performance and installation-based exhibition Thanx 4 Coming, Yaël Kempf pushes against typical conventions about how art is valued intrinsically and extrinsically.

When art is treated as just another commodity to be consumed, it is not only the artwork that is for sale, but also all those involved in its creation.

This dynamic allows those in a small elite circle with the greatest financial resources to position themselves as gatekeepers, thereby passing judgment on the meaning of art itself.

Yaël Kempf critiques this system and tries to break it by giving everyone who visits the exhibition a €1 coin. This paradigm shift of paying visitors for showing up – as opposed to requiring an entrance fee – draws them into the performance and, by extension, its valuation. The more visitors who attend the exhibition, the more money the artist loses.

This transparent valuation is based solely on social interaction. You don’t have to do anything because you won’t be judged. You can do everything because you alone decide.

The video and sculpture installation transforms the exhibition space into a darkened nightclub with deep bass, fog machines, and rotating lights.

Participants become invisible in the dense fog and sink into limbo. Kempf then changes the perspective and breaks the illusion of being at a party by throwing visitors back into the dysfunctional present via video screens.

The artist persuasively dissects the relationship between image, language, and viewer to reassemble it into a new narrative construct. The resulting declaration of love tries to seduce the visitor into visualizing another worldview formed by fate instead of chance.

Thanx 4 Coming moves between the surreal and the unavoidable truth that each of us must leave our individual comfort zones in order to come together collectively to create social change.

Alexander Pütz & Angela Thiesen

Followed by Talk: ART & VALUE // December 7, 2019, 4 p.m.

A conversation with Gil Bronner (Philara Collection, Düsseldorf), David Evrard (artist, Brussels),

Markus Kersting (kuk Galerie, Cologne) and moderated by Raphael Nocken (Kunsthalle Düsseldorf).

Special thanks to Elvira Axt, Gil Bronner, David Evrard, Markus Kersting, Raphael Nocken

fotos © Deniz Saridas