John Zurier | Etchings & Monotypes
Opening reception with the artist: Sat, 24 November 2018, 6 – 9 pm | Exhibition: 27 November 2018 – 2 February 2019
With artist talk between John Zurier and Mark Gisbourne (art historian and curator) at 7:30 pm
Please remember our new address: Goethestrasse 79, 10623 Berlin-Charlottenburg
“What I like about etching is that it is a mental and physical construction involving both a direct and an indirect process. […] Even haphazard incidental lines, random scratches, and the most delicate wavering marks remain with clarity.”
John Zurier, 2018
BORCH Editions is excited to present the second collaboration with US artist John Zurier. To categorize his work as minimalist would be rather misleading as that term has always been loaded with historical and formal connotations and these ideologies and aesthetic narratives can only partly describe what he is interested in. The exhibition at our Berlin gallery comprises etchings—taking up on ideas from his last visit at our print studio—as well as monotypes that he sees as an opportunity to “move quickly and play with different ideas and motifs.” This juxtaposition represents two very different approaches of working with the printing plate, one being a rather time consuming process while the other is a more intuitive and immediate practice.
For an etching, traces are worked into the plate in a complex and convoluted process. Coming to the print studio, Zurier embraced the challenges and possibilities of working in a technique that is different from his usual painting practice. Etching, for him, ”is all about light, tone, and simplicity, it is an expression of immediacy fixed in place by the pressure of the press.” His fascination for the copper plate derives from it being a world in itself, the shiny, delicate surface that can register the slightest and most humble touch of the artist’s hand, marks, that are close to nothing carrying an “authority, presence, and weight of its own.”
The soft ground etchings from the October series (2017) have been influenced by the experimental print works of the Dutch artist Hercules Seghers (1589–1638), one of the most prolific print makers of his time, who printed different versions of the same plate. Zurier decided to have the four etching plates printed in a color and in a grey edition. In the four color etchings, he was looking for a “balance between color and atmosphere, surface modulation and naturalness.” When trying different colors, he discovered how much they affect the tone and the grain of each line. Significant for the grey works was how the grey “brought out nuances in each print that were too blunt when printed in a pure black.” The four black line etchings October Notes complete the series, carrying the careless intimacy of small drawings in a sketchbook.
For the monotypes, Zurier worked with watercolor on either an old copper plate or a plastic board. The ones on copper turned out to have a greater transparency in the color while the traces on the old plates added to the experience of surprise and discovery which made it so important for Zurier to work in that medium. Working rather intuitively with the wet color on the blank surface of the plate, he focused on “creating a feeling of color emerging from light.”
The exhibition at BORCH Editions coincides with a presentation of paintings at Galerie Nordenhake Berlin from 23 November through 12 January.
Thomas Demand | Markus Draper | Elmgreen & Dragset
EMoP European Month of Photography 2018
Opening: Friday, 14 September 2018, 6 – 9 pm
Art Berlin Gallery Openings: Friday 28 September 2018, 6– 9 pm. Markus Draper will be present
Exhibition extended: 15 September – 17 November 2018
BORCH Editions are excited to open the Berlin gallery’s new location with a group exhibition on cpontemporary photogravure. The exhibition features classic print projects by Thomas Demand and Elmgreen & Dragset alongside the print studio’s first collaboration with Markus Draper.
Draper’s artistic practice often revolves around his own biography. Born and raised in the former GDR, his family had access to the magazine Schöner Wohnen, (‘Better Living‘), a publication about architecture, interior design and lifestyle. Draper’s hometown Görlitz, was too far away from West Germany to receive Western television stations, so the magazine played a crucial role in shaping Draper’s view of the unfamiliar, inaccessible part of his home country.
More than thirty years later, these magazines form basis for Markus Draper’s first collaboration with BORCH Editions. In Schöner Kind, a series of eight photogravures, Draper uses imagery from the original magazines, which in the 1960s and 70s often featured children almost as if they were decorative elements. Draper juxtaposes the Western educational ideal of the ‘nuclear family‘ with the East German ideal of collective education. The works are a reactivation of his own childhood memories as well as an attempt to shed light on a society which attempted to numb the memories of its recent national socialist past in a capitalist culture of consuming frenzy.
Please note our Berlin gallery’s new address
Goethestr. 79, 10623 Berlin
New Berlin Address
Niels Borch Jensen’s Berlin gallery is moving to a new location in Charlottenburg.
Our new adress will be
The first exhibition in our new location will open
Friday, 14 September 2018, 6 – 9 pm
Thomas Zipp | abstract pleasures
Opening reception with the artist: Fri, 16 February 2018, 6 – 9 pm | Exhibition: 17 February – 21 April 2018
BORCH Editions are excited to present the result of their first collaboration with Thomas Zipp in Berlin. The exhibition entitled abstract pleasures features the artist’s print project of the same title and is supplemented by the work Blessed (2015, courtesy Galerie Guido W. Baudach, Berlin).
For abstract pleasures, a series of six works, the artist combined photogravure plates with different etching techniques and letters, which he hand-punched into copper plates. The photogravure plates depict various motives, among them a neglected plastic plant from the artist’s studio, and apple, or a table with items scattered over it.
Two of the works depict scenes from Zipp’s performances, which often feature so-called Resusci Anne or Rescue Anne dolls. They were originally invented for reanimation training in the late 1950s and have been mass-produced since the 1960s. The doll’s face was modeled after The Unknown Woman from the Seine (L’Inconnue de la Seine), a young woman who presumably committed suicide, and whose body was found in Paris by the river Seine around 1900. Her death mask was reproduced frequently and became popular among Paris artists and intellectuals of the time because of the face’s exceptional beauty and mysterious smile.
Thomas Zipp’s work is informed by his interest in religion, philosophy, history, and science. He is especially preoccupied with Psychophysics, a subdiscipline of psychology. Psychophysics is the science of the relationship between an individual’s inner sensations and the outer physical stimuli triggering them. Zipp translates the interrelation of subjective experience and objective measurement into the visual tension between photographic material and grids or bits of scientific text.
Matt Saunders | Kupferdrucke
Opening reception with the artist: Fri, 24 November 2017, 6 – 9 pm | Exhibition: 25 November 2017 – 10 February 2018
Coinciding with his solo exhibition at the Saint Louis Art Museum, Matt Saunders is presenting his latest series of large-scale etchings in Niels Borch Jensen’s Berlin gallery. The exhibition marks the occasion of Galerienhaus Berlin’s 10th anniversary.
In the five large-scale prints of his new series Ratlos / Indomitable, Matt Saunders works with portraits of the movie character Leni Peickert, who appears in two films by German director Alexander Kluge: Die Artisten in der Zirkuskuppel: ratlos (1968) and Die unbezähmbare Leni Peickert (1970). Kluge’s films depict a young woman leading a business, a young artist trying to modernize a circus in a modern media environment.
Between the poles of the two titles—‘perplexed‘ and ‘dauntless‘—is a fierce intelligence and determination, and from today’s vantage the films offer a reflection on a historical moment of feminism, with allusions to both a split and a double consciousness. Saunders had already worked with a split portrait of Leni Peickert, executed from two copper plates, while working in BORCH’s Copenhagen print studio in 2015. In his new works, the artist chose a more monumental format, exchanging the split composition with a visual doubling, a hand-drawn overlapping of frames rendered in soap ground. The instability of the ground and time-based action of the acid led to images that are, in one way, stable combinations of multiple frames and in another way irreconcilable, suspended in flux.
Matt Saunders’ complex manipulations of seemingly random marks, executed in a number of different printing techniques, create a pictorial space in which the viewer is led from one viewpoint to another and back, like in a constantly changing labyrinth. The new prints bear witness to Saunders’ ability to navigate simultaneously in several complex spaces over a long period of time without losing focus. We are pulled into the works and enter their universe without noticing the effort it took to create them.
Thomas Scheibitz | Etchings / Photogravures
Opening: Fri, 15 September 2017, 6 – 9 pm | Exhibition: 16 September – 18 November 2017
BORCH Editions are excited to present the result of their first collaboration with Thomas Scheibitz in Berlin. The exhibition features the portfolio T.O.A.H., a suite of 21 works in a variety of printing techniques.
Scheibitz’ interest in the print medium encompasses both the complex, time-consuming production process, and the artistic possibilities arising from it: He is fascinated by the physical resistance of engraving lines into a copper plate, and by the alchemy of the etching process. He embraces the specific conditions of printmaking, like the reversion of the image when transferring it from plate to paper; a phenomenon he refers to as ‘mirrored thoughts’. Conceptionally, Scheibitz is intrigued by the tension between the fugitive, rushed nature of sketches or drawings and their permanent fixation on a plate.
The work of Dutch painter and graphic artist Hercules Seghers is an important reference point for Scheibitz’ graphic works: Seghers, the assumed inventor of coloured etchings, depicted vast, anonymous landscapes, the locations of which he never specified. Likewise, Scheibitz refers to his own images as „open spaces“ – landscapes between abstraction and figuration, beyond specific location or narrative.
Thomas Scheibitz’ unique visual language bridges the realms of figuration and abstraction. Drawing from classical painting and architecture, the contemporary urban landscape, and popular culture, Scheibitz deconstructs and recombines signs, images, shapes, and architectural fragments in ways that challenge traditional contexts and interpretations.
Opening: Fri, 28 April 2017, 6 – 9 pm | Exhibition: 29 April – 29 July 2017
For his first collaboration with BORCH Editions, Stanley Whitney created large-scale coloured monotypes alongside a series of eight black-and-white etchings. The Berlin solo presentation of the works will coincide with the artist’s participation in documenta 14.
In his monotypes, Stanley Whitney organizes the plate by means of horizontal and vertical lines, using the colour fields in between to reflect on the qualities of the single colours as well as their relation to each other. Monotypes are unique works, created on a featureless plate. In contrast to other printing techniques, the artist does not leave permanent marks on the plate but simply paints on its surface. The plate thus serves as a mere vehicle to transfer the artist’s painting onto paper. The resulting image cannot be repeated exactly, but the residue left on the plate may be used to create so-called ‘ghosts’, which give the artist the possibility of testing many variations of an image.
In his series of eight black-and-white etchings, Whitney abandons his signature grid in favour of a more investigative approach, skilfully exploring the possibilities of different etching techniques, often layering one over the other, creating works of remarkable spatial depth.
Stanley Whitney’s work is a vibrant statement for the significance of abstraction in contemporary art. He is best known for his grids of variously sized and proportioned blocks in different colours, separated by horizontal and vertical bands. While his style might evoke associations of 20th century minimalism, his deliberate rejection of geometric accuracy and his energetic, joyful brushstroke provide for a highly unique style.
Iñaki Bonillas | Escritura nocturna (Nocturnal Writing)
Opening: Fri, 20 January 2017, 6 – 9 pm | Exhibition: 21 January – 22 April 2017
Niels Borch Jensen Gallery & Editions are excited to present Iñaki Bonillas’ photogravure projects in Berlin. The solo exhibition entitled Escritura nocturna (Nocturnal Writing) features the artist’s latest project of the same name alongside the series A Storm of Secondary Things.
Iñaki Bonillas’ new series of prints, Escritura nocturna (Nocturnal Writing), 2015, borrows its name from Charles Barbier’s code system, the forerunner of Braille. Soldiers used it during the Napoleonic Wars to communicate silently and without light in the darkness. The project is based on photographs, collected by the artist’s grandfather, kept in black letter size pieces of paper and then covered with embracing plastic sleeves. After years of protecting the images from dust and erosion, these photographs had stamped their contour onto the sheets with such precision that we see pages full of empty pictures, hollow rectangles—like ghosts of past images, or a code that needs to be deciphered: a nocturnal writing.
In his photogravure-series A Storm of Secondary Things, 2012, Bonillas addresses ‘secondariness’ by extracting scenes from the overlooked background of photographs by the artist’s grandfather. Bonillas renders the twenty-five newly emerged images in the secondary colours green, orange, and violet. He links elements that are a priori incompatible: A personal, biographical narrative that consists of private anecdotes and emotions on one, and the quasi-scientific practices of compilating, classifying, and archiving on the other hand.
Iñaki Bonillas is represented at Niels Borch Jensen Editions primarily as an artist who focuses on photography as part of our daily lives, consciousness and memory—the vast archive that defines us as individuals. By questioning the editing of the world that all of us constantly perform, Bonillas’ photographic works evoke the impossible relationship between reality and memory, and the power of the image.
John Zurier | Summer Book
Opening: Fri, 28 October 2016, 6 – 9 pm | Exhibition: 29 October 2016 – 14 January 2017
Niels Borch Jensen Gallery & Editions are thrilled to present the print shop’s first collaboration with John Zurier, in the solo exhibition Summer Book in our Berlin gallery.
In John Zurier’s works, seemingly monochromatic surfaces evolve into visual poetry. His language is minimal and at the same time very distinct: linear elements build up space through an interaction of presence and absence. Inspired by observations of natural phenomena, light conditions and colour, the works convey a characteristic calmness and purity.
While working with Niels Borch Jensen Editions in the summer of 2016, Zurier investigated the technique of line etching as a way of drawing on the plate: ‘What I was looking for in these prints was a slow and variable light. What I found was a way to bring drawings to the surface.’ He effortlessly translates his artistic practice as a painter from canvas to copper plate to make the very process of printmaking visible: The marks in the plate, executed by brush or needle, become evident; the force with which the paper is pressed into the indentations is almost palpable. The three-dimensionality of ink sitting on paper, the rich texture of the surfaces, the physical material at hand becomes the topic of a meditation on color and surface.
Summer Book, the title of the exhibition and the portfolio of eight etchings, refers to Zurier‘s stay in Copenhagen: ‘Working on the small plates, it occurred to me that they had an intimacy like looking at the pages of a book. When I wasn’t working, I would wander around the city looking at the light reflecting on the water and the buildings, and the trees against the sky, and the deepening shadows of late evening in King’s Garden. The idea of making a book of summer notes came to me. I thought of it as a book of random visual vignettes, formless with no apparent order, where the pleasure comes from finding the subtle connections and contrasts.’
The exhibition gathers the Summer Book prints as well as four further prints that are directly linked to some of Zurier’s most recent paintings (courtesy Nordenhake Gallery Berlin / Stockholm), one of which will be presented alongside the prints.
Lewis Baltz | Tacita Dean | Olafur Eliasson | Adam Jeppesen | Clay Ketter | Boris Mikhailov
Opening: 9 September 2016, 6 – 9 pm | Exhibition: 10 September – 22 October 2016
As part of this year’s European Month of Photography, Niels Borch Jensen Gallery & Editions show works by Lewis Baltz, Tacita Dean, Olafur Eliasson, Adam Jeppesen, Clay Ketter, and Boris Mikhailov. The exhibition investigates the medium of photogravure, offering a survey of its spectrum of conceptual possibilities.
Photogravure is one of the oldest and most haptic ways of transferring a photo to a piece of paper: A photopositive is brought onto a printing plate by exposing its light-sensitive material through a finely rasterized film, thereby creating microscopic indentations in the plate’s surface. Depending on their depth, these indentations hold different amounts of ink during the printing process, thus allowing for a more extensive colour gradation than any other printing technique. Niels Borch Jensen Editions have been working with photogravures since the early 1990s in order to accommodate contemporary artists’ desire to include photographic material into their work.
The exhibition is part of EMOP Berlin – European Month of Photography
Julie Mehretu | Epigraph, Damascus
Pre-opening: 28 April 2016, 6 – 9 pm | Opening: Fri, 29 April 2016, 6 – 9 pm
Exhibition break: 7 – 22 June | Exhibition extended: 30 April – 30 July 2016
Opening hours during Gallery Weekend Berlin: 31 April & 1 May 2016, 11 am – 7 pm
Niels Borch Jensen Gallery & Editions are excited to present the print shop’s first collaboration with American artist Julie Mehretu. The monumental work entitled Epigraph, Damascus will see its inaugural exhibition in Berlin.
Julie Mehretu’s points of departure for Epigraph, Damascus are layered architectural drawings of buildings in Damascus, Syria. Columns, arches and porticoes, shown from multiple perspectives, are among the many depicted architectural details of the war-torn city. Political and social elements are unavoidably tied to these architectural forms. Mehretu once described her works as ‘story maps of no location’, manifestations of an imagined rather than actual reality. Deconstructed elements, symbols, from well-known places get fused, and new meanings emerge.
Per Kirkeby | Serial Thinking | Installation Views
Exhibition: 12 March – 23 April 2016
Per Kirkeby | Serial Thinking
Opening: 11 March, 6 – 9 pm | Exhibition: 12 March – 23 April 2016
Per Kirkeby, arguably Denmark’s most famous living artist, announced the end of his career as a painter in 2015. His collaboration with our printshop, which dates back as far as 1979, continues nevertheless, and we are excited to present his latest series of etchings alongside recent monotypes in our Berlin gallery. All works were produced by Niels Borch Jensen Editions, Copenhagen, and are published by Knust & Kunz, Munich.
Carsten Höller, SUPERFLEX, Danh Vo | Recent Projects
Opening: 15 January, 6 – 9 pm | Exhibition: 16 January – 5 March 2016
Niels Borch Jensen Gallery is dedicating its first exhibition in 2016 to new works by Carsten Höller, SUPERFLEX and Danh Vo. Bringing their latest projects to Berlin, the show will demonstrate the diverse ways in which contemporary artists translate their conceptual work approach into the medium of photogravure.
Tal R | A Happy Madness of Colors
Opening: 30 October, 6 – 9 pm | Exhibition: 31 October 2015 – 9 January 2016
Niels Borch Jensen Gallery is pleased to present the latest results of our two-decade-long collaboration with Tal R. His solo exhibition A Happy Madness of Colors will gather the artist’s most recent woodcuts and etchings, many of which have never been shown in Berlin before.
Tal R, one of Denmark’s most renowned contemporary artists, is known for his ever-expanding universe of images, many of which he finds in everyday life, pop culture, or on his various journeys around the globe. In his latest series of etchings, he samples works from his 2015 solo-exhibition Altstadt Girl at Cheim & Read, New York. Using details from his large-scale paintings, the artist allows the viewer to experience the works as if through a magnifying glass, while at the same time creating a series of autonomous new works.
While being deeply familiar with the art of printmaking, Tal R keeps an investigative mindset when working in print, exploring innovative approaches and challenging the medium as well as himself. One of his preferred techniques, the Reduction Cut, allows him to create a many-coloured image from only one plate by carving out the motive layer by layer. The Reduction Cut allows for Tal R’s typical vitality and playfulness, resulting in what Erik Steffensen in his 2008 essay on the artist’s graphic work called „a happy madness of colors“.
Matt Saunders | A Year with 17 Moons
Pre-Opening 11 September 6 – 9 pm (the artist will be present)
Opening 16 September 6 – 9 pm | 17 September – 24 October 2016
We are looking very much forward to present the results of our collaboration with Matt Saunders in a solo exhibition in our Berlin Gallery. On Friday, September 11, from 18:00 – 21:00, you will have the opportunity to preview the exhibition. Matt Saunders will be present for the occasion. The show will then officially open September 16 and run until October 24.
Matt Saunders’ print projects resonate with his explorations between painting and photography, particularly the large, camera-less gelatin silver prints of the past several years. In those works, he brings together multiple materials – such as oil paint, linen, various types of ink and mylar – to create paintings that function as “negatives” for exposing photographic paper. Saunders’ ruminations about medium, and his particular interrogation of the qualities of materials, are the basis for the complex prints featured in the exhibition.
Linda Karshan | On display in our Project Space
Linda Karshan inaugurated our Berlin gallery’s new Project Space with her “Footfalls”, a series of prints created in our Copenhagen workshop in 2014. In our Project Space, we will from now on display unframed series of graphic works.
So next time you visit our Berlin gallery, it’s your turn to decide what’s on display. Just ask for our assistance, we are happy to provide you with a list of unframed graphic works stored in the drawers underneath our displays.
Georg Baselitz | Baselitz druckt
Opening: 1st May, 6 – 9 pm | Exhibition Dates: 2n May – 12th September, 2015
Niels Borch Jensen Gallery & Editions is pleased to present the results of our 25-year long collaboration with Georg Baselitz. The exhibition Baselitz druckt shows a range of works including new etchings – all of them produced in our print shop in Copenhagen.
At the heart of the exhibition, Baselitz’s latest etchings Ohne Hosen in Avignon (2014) depict the artist himself in a nude portrait. Like some of his previous works, this suite is closely linked to the paintings with a similar motif. Furthermore, parts of Baselitz’s series Sing Sang Zero (2011) will be on display in the exhibition, as well as some of his graphics, also printed at our print shop in the early 90s: Zahlenspiel, Dänen Tränen, Klopfkopf und Gartenseite (1991/92).
John Kørner | Tal R, Per Kirkeby | Marianne Grønnow | Lise Blomberg| Danh Vo | Trine Søndergaard & Nicolai Howalt | Morten Schelde | Erik A. Frandsen
Preview: March 13th, 6 – 9pm | Exhibition Dates: March 14th – April 25th, 2015
Niels Borch Jensen Gallery is proud to present for the first time in Berlin the Flora Danica project which was inaugurated in 2012 on occasion of an exhibition at the Natural History Museum of Denmark telling the story of one of the worlds most comprehensive and ambitious encyclopaedias of botany, the “Icones Florae Danicae” also known as Flora Danica.
Starting with a cloudberry plant in 1761, this comprehensive atlas of botany contained upon its completion, more than 120 years later in 1883, the impressive number of 3,240 engraved copper plates which were published in fifty-one fascicles and three supplements.
For the project, nine influential contemporary Danish artists collaborated with Niels Borch Jensen Editions to create a series of graphic works based on the Flora Danica. They were invited to choose from the original copper plates and incorporate them in new prints with techniques ranging from woodcut and drypoint through aquatint to photogravure. The resulting prints are an intriguing reflection on nature and man’s understanding of it, cultural identity, and the passage of time.
Arturo Herrera | Dance
Preview: January 16th, 6 – 9pm | Exhibition: January 17th – March 7th, 2015
Arturo Herrera’s recent works for this exhibition pay tribute to the history of dance. The works take as their starting point a book of photographs by the late Russian-French Serge Lido entitled Danse, published in 1947, from which the exhibition borrows its name. Herrera lay objects from the Niels Borch Jensen print shop such as strings and twisted strips of metal over transparencies of the photographs to create collages made without cutting or gluing, and in doing so pushing the possibilities of collage further through the print medium. As in his earlier works based on dance such as Les Noces, 2007, Herrera joins a number of images together, in this case in sequence, collaging the photogravures into a performance of their own that extends the narrative from one frame to nine, from the ballet pose held in a fleeting instant, to multiple poses strung together to be experienced over the time we linger with them as viewers.
Herrera’s interventions revive these forgotten portraits of ballet: he fragments them, collages them, colours them, groups them, and in doing so, brings a new resonance and response to the work, an apt impetus considering that ballet, rehearsals and performances, unlike many other forms of art, are never seen or danced in the same way again, and can only be appreciated and momentarily experienced in the aftermath through photography, film, and in this instance, collage. Herrera re-frames these precious moments in time through his transformative series of photogravure collages.
See more of Herrera’s work here.
Gallery Niels Borch Jensen is delighted to present a survey exhibition of works celebrating the past 35 years at the print shop in Copenhagen and 15 years at the gallery in Berlin. We are bringing together works made in our print shop from the early days to the present, showcasing a range of techniques and artists from across the globe.
Niels Borch Jensen Editions was established in Copenhagen in 1979 with the aim of bringing emerging and established contemporary artists to work seriously with print media by producing projects that stand as significant, self-contained works of art. Our gallery space in Berlin was subsequently opened in 1999.
The heart of Niels Borch Jensen is the Copenhagen workshop. Most of our editions are in classic intaglio techniques using copper printing plates, but since 1990 photogravure has become an area of special expertise for the printshop as it is one of the most popular techniques amongst our artists. As well as photogravures, we produce woodcuts, offset-lithographs and monotypes.
The print-making, always done in-house at our Copenhagen facilities, is a close collaborative process between the artists, Niels Borch Jensen and his team of master-printers. The collaboration usually continues over many years and projects, allowing the artists to build up a comprehensive body of printed work that explores various aspects of the medium and ties in closely with their oeuvre. Many of the artists we will be exhibiting have been working with us for over a decade. With this exhibition, we intend to show print-making as one of the veins running through the contemporary art world for the past four decades rather than portraying individual artists careers, and to capture the versatility within that vein—the multitude of expressions within the print medium.
Preview: 21st November 2014, 6 – 8 pm, Exhibition Dates: 22nd November 2014 – 9th January 2015 Tue – Sat, 11am – 6pm
Jean-Michel Basquiat Through Nicholas Taylor
Preview: September 12th, 6 – 9pm
The opening evening will feature the official release of Plethora magazine, Issue. No. 2
Exhibition Dates: September 13th – November 8th, 2014
Gallery Niels Borch Jensen is delighted to present a series of photogravure portraits of Jean-Michel Basquiat by Nicholas Taylor.
The intimate portraits, capturing the early moments of a close friendship between two artists, were taken at Taylor’s apartment late into the night he first met Basquiat in New York in 1979.
Jean-Michel Basquiat, graffiti artist, painter, poet, musician and producer, who died prematurely at the age of 27 in 1988, has become an iconic figure of his generation. His Neo-Expressionist, Primitivist works reveal his profound sense of conflict between inner and outer experience. Taylor’s portraits give a rare glimpse of this inner world: Basquiat, in the privacy and liberty of the night, reveals a vulnerability, playfulness and youth alongside a profound seriousness. Although these traits characterise his canvases, they emerge rarely in other footage of the artist himself.
Taylor has collaborated with Niels Borch Jensen to transform the original negatives into photogravure prints. The images are simultaneously being featured in Plethora Magazine’s 2nd edition, to be launched at the gallery space on the preview evening of the exhibition. Plethora Magazine is an independent, biannual publication that seeks to challenge the bounds of the conventional magazine format — conceptually as well as physically: The magazine strings together archival material, fine art prints and contemporary artist features in a novel approach to printed matter.
Nicholas Taylor, b. 1953 in Belleville, Illinois, USA, moved to New York City in 1977 where he currently lives and works. In 1979, he met Jean-Michel Basquiat and joined his band Gray as guitarist. The band was unique, and associated with the “No Wave” scene in New York City at that time. In 1982, Basquiat named Taylor “DJ High Priest” for a collaboration they did at the Squat Theater in New York City. In the same year, with ‘tape loop-dj’ing’, Taylor opened in Michael Holman’s weekly Hip Hop event in the East Village. High Priest was the DJ for the New York City Breakers, opening for acts like Soul Sonic Force and Grand Master Flash. While Taylor is primarily a DJ, he has also experimented with photography, though he kept this work in his personal archives until 2004. Recently, his photographs have been shown in Tokyo, London and Copenhagen. He continues to work as a musician.
Richard Winther | Selected Photographs
Opening: 27 June, 6 – 9pm
Exhibition: 28 June – 31 July 2014
Niels Borch Jensen Gallery is honored to introduce for the first time in Germany the photographic work of Danish artist Richard Winther. This is the second collaborative exhibition between Niels Borch Jensen and Gallery Taik Persons.
In Denmark, Richard Winther (1926-2007) was a well-known artist. He was a painter, a sculptor and a graphic artist. He made installations, wrote books and taught younger artists. Since his youth, he had also been interested in photography and taken many pictures.
Until the mid-1960s Winther’s photographs were fairly traditional. He documented his travels abroad and visits to the studios of artists he admired. Giacometti was one of them and he made, but did not publish, a photobook with pictures taken in his studio (a facsimile has been published posthumously). In 1966, he – along with other artists and photographers – was invited to take pictures in Thorvaldsen’s Museum, Copenhagen. They were asked to give an interpretation of Thorvaldsen’s works and the museum in which they were housed for an exhibition to be shown there later. This changed Winther’s view of photography. He spent months photographing the sculptures, mostly from various unorthodox angles and trying out various chemical processes in the dark-room. He was no longer interested in making “good” pictures. Instead, he was attempting to create new kinds of images.
From then on, Winther’s approach to photography was experimental. He tried out different types of cameras with special lenses and even started constructing cameras himself. He studied the early history of photography with great fascination for Daguerre and Nicéphore Niépce in particular. They became his “heroes” – or at least important predecessors to whom he wanted to pay tribute. As the painting in the exhibition shows, he often did this in a very humoristic way.
The exhibition focuses on the experimental work and includes photographs from different series. Some are the results of the technical experiments with cameras and lenses. Female models were often the focus of his experiments with photographs taken of them in various poses and different lighting. He would also set up tableaux to try out compositions, sometimes in view of paintings he was working on. Thus, in many cases the photographs fed directly into his work in other media, such as painting or sculpture. He never became a “professional” photographer, one indication of which is that he never printed editions of his works. Almost without exception each print is unique.
Anneli Fuchs, art historian and researcher, has curated the exhibition which is presented in collaboration with the artist’s heir Tobias Winther and Galleri Tom Christoffersen in Copenhagen.
Taciata Dean | Quatemary
Opening: 2 May, 6 – 9pm | Exhibition: 3 May – 21 June 2014
Niels Borch Jensen Gallery is delighted to invite you to an exhibition of Tacita Dean’s latest print project: Quatemary is a contructed landscape of post-apocalpytic ruin, composed of found 19th Century albumen prints merged with the artist’s writings and drawings.
The 6.5 metre-long artwork is the culmination of her previous photogravure works where she has been developing techniques far beyond traditional printmaking. Over the years, they have become a major part of her oeuvre. Since Dean first worked with photogravure in 2001, she has explored ways of combining found material with graphic over-drawing and writing, which originated from techniques first developed from her blackboard drawings. With Quatemary, Dean is fusing her use of found imagery with actual blackboard drawing to create an epic narrative within a single pictorial frame.
Her inspiration was the memory of a documentary on the Yellowstone supervolcano, as she explains: ”The Yellowstone supervolcano is a blister of a volcano, which has no release. Magma has been gathering beneath the Park’s crust for millennia with no means to break through. The surface is noticeably rising and noticeably steaming. Soon, the programme said, the pressure would become so great that the ground would be wrenched apart causing an explosion of such epic magnitude that several states of America would be as good as wiped out instantaneously, and that it would cause the rest of the world to be covered with an ash cloud, so dense that it would block out the sun and cause an ice age. The human species would become extinct.”
Tacita Dean, b. 1965 in Canterbury, England, lives and works in Berlin and has been collaborating with Niels Borch Jensen since 2001.
Please read more about Tacita Dean here.
Iñaki Bonillas &
Sandra Vasquez de la Horra
Opening: 14 March, 6 – 9pm
Exhibition: 15 March – 26 April 2014
Niels Borch Jensen is delighted to announce an exhibition of two projects by Iñaki Bonillas and Sandra Vasquez de la Horra, to be exhibited at the gallery for the first time.
Iñaki Bonillas’ most recent series of photogravures, entitled Theme and Variations (2013), continues his persistent exploration of the ways in which individuals constantly edit, and accept others’ editings, of the world around them. The photographs from which the project originates are a series of documentative images of a car crash that Bonillas found in an album inherited from his grandfather in 2000. The clinical account of the damages caused to his grandfather’s 1961 Peugeot 403 coexists bizarrely alongisde typical family scenes and memories in the album.
With this clash of contents in mind, Bonillas worked on combining the 8 original photographs, beginning by splitting them each in half, and then pairing the resulting 16 halves until all possible permutations were achieved. The result is 240 unique photogravures that never repeat a single combination.
By questioning the way individuals curate their lives and realities, Bonillas’ photographic works evoke the impossible relationship between reality and memory, and finally the power of the image.
Iñaki Bonillas, b. 1981 in Mexico City, lives and works in Mexico City. Bonillas is a sculptor with an equal interest in installation and photography, and is represented at Niels Borch Jensen primarily as an artist who focuses on photography as part of our daily lives, consciousness and memory – the vast archive that defines us as subjects.
Sandra Vasquez de la Horra
Sandra Vasquez de la Horra has created a series of profoundly personal drypoint prints that, as with her earlier work, speak of fears, visualize dreams and nightmares, and recount memories. The prints are vivid depictions of a strangely familiar and yet uncanny existence. Lone figures are often drawn without limbs or skin, raw and disarmed and yet strikingly determined.
The dominance of the female figure stands out in Vasquez de la Horra’s oeuvre: mothers, nuns, saints, seductresses, prisoners, damned ones. They are objects of desire, while desiring themselves. They are deeply catholic or deeply pagan, but no matter what, radiate a base sexuality. The figures seem to hover on the paper – perspective plays almost no role in her compositions, turning our focus to the hard lines and geometric forms that contrast with the tender humans.
Sandra Vasquez de la Horra, b.1967 in Chile, lives and works in Berlin. Sandra Vasquez de la Horra has worked with Niels Borch Jensen Editions since 2012.
Olafur Eliasson, Adam Jeppesen & Joakim Eskildsen | The Return of the Real
Opening: January 17 2014, 6-9 pm
Exhibition: January 18 – March 2014
Niels Borch Jensen Galley is pleased to present a collaborative exhibition with Gallery Taik Persons featuring the works of three Danish artists: Olafur Eliasson, and Adam Jeppesen presented by Niels Borch Jensen, and Joakim Eskildsen presented by Taik Persons.
The title of the exhibition is borrowed from Hal Foster’s 1996 book The Return of the Real, in which he discusses the conceptual genealogies of the avant-garde that engage in a historical and social conversation.
The notion of environment and our perceptions of it are at the core of this exhibition, explored through the sensibilities of the three Nordic artists. Each of them presents photographic perspectives of nature, which when viewed in dialogue with one-another reveal the malleability of our perceptions, and how deeply personal our modes of seeing are.
While their techniques, visual foci and final structures differ, the artists’ works collectively capture the dynamism of the nature to which they pay tribute.
The artists photograph the realities they encounter without staging or manipulating, and yet the outcome is nevertheless an interpretation, an insight into their sensibilities.
Olafur Eliasson was born in 1967 in Copenhagen, Denmark, of Icelandic parentage. He has been working with Niels Borch Jensen since their first print project collaboration in 1996. He currently lives and works in Berlin.
Adam Jeppesen was born in 1978 in Kalundborg, Denmark. Jeppesen featured for the first time at Art Basel in 2013 with a work from this project, his first collaboration with Niels Borch Jensen. Jeppesen lives and works between Copenhagen and Buenos Aires.
Thaddeus Strode | Everybody wants to go to heaven, but no one wants to die
Opening: 1 November 2013, 6 – 9 pm
Exhibition: 2 November – 20 December 2013
Niels Borch Jensen Galley is pleased to present our first exhibition with the Los Angeles-based artist Thaddeus Strode
The light sunny site and the dark site of California meet in Everybody wants to go to heaven, but no one wants to die, a suite of 18 new prints by Strode.
Filled with contradictions the combined etching and off set prints incorporate Strode’s distinctive line and recognizable imagery from mass media and everyday life. Fragments that appear familiar yet somehow thwart the viewer’s ability to pinpoint definitive sources.
Born in Santa Monica in 1964, Strode draws freely on the youth culture in which he came of age – comic books, adventure stories, horror films – as well as the culture and clichés of the southern California lifestyle to produce cryptic – and captivating – fantasy worlds.
Since the late 1980s Strode has created wild, vibrantly coloured mash-ups in primarily large-scale paintings, drawings, graphics, sculpture and mixed media. Everybody wants to go to heaven, but no one wants to die is the first print project Thaddeus Strode has made in collaboration with Niels Borch Jensen Editions.
Thaddeus Strode lives and work in Los Angeles, he took his artistic education at Otis/Parsons Art Institute and California Institute of the Arts, BFA (1982-1986).
His work has been exhibited at Kemper Art Museum, Saint Louis; the Kunstverein in Heilbronn, Germany; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; the ZKM in Karlsruhe, Germany; the Staatsgalerie in Stuttgart, Germany; neugerriemschneider, Berlin; Galleria Gio Marconi in Milan. Strode’s works are in public and private collections worldwide.
Read more about Thaddeus Strode and see the entire project, Everybody wants to go to heaven, but no one wants to die, here.
Tacita Dean Carsten Höller Danh Vo | New Print Projects
Opening: 20 September 2013, 6–10 pm
Exhibition: 21 September – 26 October 2013 – Tue–Sat 11–6 pm
Opening hours during Berlin Art Week: Sat 11–6 & Sun 12–7 pm
Niels Borch Jensen Gallery is proud to present new print projects by Tacita Dean, Carsten Höller and Danh Vo.
JG (offset), 2013 is 14 film stills from Tacita Dean’s newest film JG, 2013. JG is inspired by Dean’s correspondence with British author J.G. Ballard regarding connections between Robert Smithson’s iconic earthwork and film Spiral Jetty, 1970 and Ballard’s short story The Voices of Time, 1960.
JG is a visually stunning, elliptical interpretation of a speculative conversation between Ballard, Smithson, and Dean that reaches across decades and disciplines. The film was shot at six different sites in the saline landscapes of Utah and Southern California.
Tacita Dean is born in Canterbury England in 1965 and lives in Berlin. Dean has worked with Niels Borch Jensen Editions since 2001.
Carsten Höller’s new suite, Puppen, 2013, are gravures of various insect pupas. The insects are undergoing a complete metamorphosis, changing from one kind of creature to a completely different one. The images simultaneously gives a striking illustration of natural wonder and a being that must, we imagine, be going through a very disturbing change of consciousness.
Carsten Höller is born in Brussels, Belgium in 1961 and lives in Stockholm. Höller has worked with Niels Borch Jensen Editions since 2004.
‘Cultural identity’ is granted new, critical significance in Danh Vo’s works, where life lived is constantly confronted by cultural dogma, expectations, rituals and definitions. The artist’s works become a kind of litmus paper where we can trace the innermost mechanisms of our culture. Close ups of hands from famous Michelangelo sculptures are the point of departure for Vo’s new series of six gravures: Untitled, 2013. Typical of Vo he uses existing and found material.
Danh Vo is born in Vietnam in 1975. Vo has worked with Niels Borch Jensen Editions since 2010.