Zurich Art Weekend: Three highly recommended exhibitions

Portrait of the artist Korakrit Arunanondchai, who has his first solo exhibition in Switzerland. (Image: Joyze Chen)

At the Zurich Art Weekend, which takes place from September 17 to 19, 2021, level-headed viewers as well as restless people will see a variety of art in all media, from painting and installation to performance and sculpture. The Löwenbräu area (for 25 years the center of ecstatic vernissage festivals and often great exhibitions) will open several exhibitions on September 17, 2021. The Galerie Hauser und Wirth opens with Simone Leigh, the Migros Museum with Korakrit Arunanondchai or the Kunsthalle Zürich with Art Club 2000 (have a look!). Where there are no vernissages, exhibitions that have already opened await their visitors.

There is a strong memory of the old days when you sat on the landing until late at night and talked about art, but also all kinds of other things, and met people who shared a common interest. The urge to celebrate, art or yourself, was of course also the driving force behind the large number of visitors to the opening of the season in recent years. Over the years, however, it lost more and more of its relaxed charm. Too professionalized and structured, but it was still full.

Reconstruction, storytelling and floral landscapes

The density of galleries and institutions in the city of Zurich is extremely high and no longer limited to the Löwenbräu area. Oerlikon and Zurich-West, Wiedikon, the old town, the Central, and also the lakefront regions have a lot to offer. This year, the Zurich Art Weekend has devised seven new and very clever routes. From Friday to Sunday you can cross the city on foot or by bike in an art-driven way.

With all the possibilities between partially guided exhibition visits, happenings, performances, talks or other events, one can only feel overwhelmed by reading the program booklet. If you want to go out specifically, we recommend these three exhibitions:

1st group show «Reconstruction 重建» at Karma International

The Karma International gallery is not only established in Zurich, but also internationally and has two locations within sight of each other at Wiedikoner Weststrasse 70 and 75. The program and exhibition practice of Karolina Dankow and Marina Olsen’s gallery is relaxed and lively and not very rigid.

This is probably why the exhibitions shown here are often surprising. The curators Aita Sulser & Johannes Hoerning (also known as «Fluids») presented around sixty works, poems and essays by Hans Bellmer (1902-1975), Marcel Broodthaers (1924-1976) and Meret Oppenheim (1913-1985) in a group show. to works by Ida Ekblad (born 1980) and Yun Suknam (born 1939) and several other artists under the title “Reconstruction 重建”.

Ida Ekblad, Razor, Rozor, 2021, oil on canvas, 180 x 140 cm, Courtesy of the artist and Karma International, Zurich (Photo: Uli Holz)

The exhibition works on the (artistic) mechanisms, possibilities or hopes of reconstruction and promises a very varied and challenging show in the selection of works from the years 1934 to 2021. Anyone who now believes that reconstruction is simply the restoration of something that once existed, let me tell you that the range of interpretations of the term is definitely greater in the exhibition.

Karma International

In addition to the “Reconstruction 重建” exhibition at Weststrasse 70, directly opposite, in the second room of the gallery at Weststrasse 75, Karma International will be opening the exhibition “Michel Auder: Dreams that money can’t buy” curated by Adam Szymczyk. There is also the opportunity to see the artist, performer and choreographer Alexandra Bachzetsis on September 18 and 19. to visit at 6 p.m. with their performance “Rehearsal (Ongoing)”. You can register for the performance here.

2. Korakrit Arunanondchai with “Songs for dying / Songs for living” in the Migros Museum for Contemporary Art

The Thai artist Korakrit Arunanondchai, who was born and raised in Bangkok in 1986, is known to some for his participation in the Venice Biennale 2019. It will be on view for the first time in a solo exhibition at the Migros Museum of Contemporary Art in Switzerland.

His latest work “Songs for dying / Songs for living” (2021) includes video installation, painting and object. You could say that his exhibitions are atmospheric stages created by him with large-format paintings, performances and sculptures on which stories are told.

Korakrit Arunanondchai, Songs for dying, 2021, Videostill, Courtesy the artist, Bangkok City City Gallery, Bangkok & Carlos/Ishikawa, London & Clearing, New York/Brussels & Kukje Gallery, South Korea; Co-commissioned by the 13th Gwangju Biennale, Han Nefkens Foundation and Kunsthall Trondheim.

Korakrit Arunanondchai, Songs for dying, 2021, Videostill, Courtesy the artist, Bangkok City City Gallery, Bangkok & Carlos/Ishikawa, London & Clearing, New York/Brussels & Kukje Gallery, South Korea; Co-commissioned by the 13th Gwangju Biennale, Han Nefkens Foundation and Kunsthall Trondheim.

Arunanondchai calls himself a storyteller. With his work, he creates the basis for an intensive, non-verbal or intuitive experience, far removed from the suppression of reality, but also with the inclusion of animistic, spiritual, historical, cross-generational or shamanistic aspects.

Arunanondchai can be seen as a connecter and as someone who can use his special power to tell stories to initiate transformative and connecting processes. Never distant or schoolmasterly, but existential, processing and universal. All of this will probably also be found in his latest work.

Migros Museum for Contemporary Art

Korakrit Arunanondchai: «Songs for dying / Songs for living

Korakrit Arunanondchai’s vernissage: “Songs for dying / Songs for living” will take place on September 17, 2021 from 6 p.m. in the Migros Museum for Contemporary Art. The exhibition runs until 9.1.2022. On September 17 At 9 p.m. there will also be a concert by Aaron David Ross & Korakrit Arunanondchai on the ramp, which is also an album release. If you want to experience the artist in person, we recommend the Artist Conversation between Korakrit Arunanondchai and Tosh Basco on September 18, 2021 at 2 p.m. Registration is required for this.

3. Johanna Hullár in the cultural area Hotspot

In the independent cultural area Hotspot at Stationsstrasse 21 in Zurich Wiedikon, the photographer and artist Johanna Hullár (born 1989 in Budapest) will present her latest work “Floral Landscape” on September 17th from 6pm and on September 18th from 12pm to 8pm the end. The combination of moving and still images promises to be poetic, confusing and atmospheric. On the one hand, «Floral Landscape» shows in a very attractive way the merging of what actually exists and what has been created digitally.

Johanna Hullár, Floral Landscape, 2021.

Johanna Hullár, Floral Landscape, 2021.

Common wealthy waste, such as plastic and silicone, is shown in an arrangement of flowers and plants and in 3D collages it is part of a futuristic landscape. It is difficult to escape the dreamlike beauty. In her video works, however, Hullár redefines the still life genre. Not a frozen still-life picture, but a moving shot that breathes life into the staged and static object-likeness and gives it the admission of change, but also finiteness.


Johanna Hullár

In the hotspot, which is attached to the Hotmailhotnail nail studio, the artist and photographer Johanna Hullár will be showing on September 17th and 18th. her work “Floral Landscape”. On September 17 the vernissage begins at 6 p.m. At 8.30 p.m. there will be a live performance (sound & video Äster & Johanna Hullár). The floral design for the work “Floral Landscape” was done by Jenni Tschugmell, the sound design for the video work was created by Eszter Dóra Forgács.

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