Don’t Look Now - The Contemporary Art Collection, Part 1 06.11.2010 – 03.20.2011 In memory of Toni Gerber (1932–2010)
I see, therefore I know (not)
The Kunstmuseum Bern is exhibiting works from its collection of international contemporary art. Challenging visitors with the playful title "Don’t look now", the works selected for the exhibition engage with the themes of seeing, visibility, invisibility, and visual perception.
This is the first presentation of a thematic series intended to make the
Kunstmuseum's international collection of contemporary art visible.
Because the Kunstmuseum lacks space for a permanent presentation of
contemporary art, the prolific holdings in this area are not always on
view. This means all too often for visitors interested in art: Do not
look now because there is nothing contemporary to be seen anyway.
Making the invisible visible
The motto has been borrowed from the classic film with the same name by Nicolas Roeg (1973). The film addresses the problem of the most crucial factors often remaining invisible or easily overlooked. Consequently, the protagonist of the film falls victim to his fate despite obvious portents. The contradictory motto refers to the pivotal role played by visual perception in viewing the pictorial arts. The artworks on exhibition explore the issue of making the invisible or that which cannot be depicted visible. Several works focus on perception itself while others invite the beholder to look but offer "nothing" to see. One of the experiences we are confronted with in viewing contemporary art is that its essential statement is not visible. We look at it but see nothing.
The invisible moment of gaining insight
Thus the exhibition revolves around the question of how contemporary art triggers an intellectual process by which the beholder gains insight as well as around how contemporary art deals with the invisible. To see, to put onto view, to make it impossible to see, invisibility, visibility - with relish the exhibition pursues these notions by juxtaposing different artworks.
The works on exhibition are from the holdings of and permanent loans from the foundations residing in the Kunstmuseum Bern - the Stiftung Kunsthalle Bern, the Stiftung Kunst Heute, Stiftung GegenwART, Bernische Stiftung für Fotografie, Film und Video (FFV), Hermann und Margrit Rupf-Stiftung - as well as from the holdings of the donations made by the deceased gallery owner Toni Gerber and from the Kunstmuseum Bern itself.
The exhibition includes works by: Silvia Bächli, Herbert Brandl, Stefan Brüggemann, James Lee Byars, Hans Danuser, Joel Fisher, Ceal Floyer, Pia Fries, Christian Marclay, Olivier Mosset, Yves Netzhammer, Boris Nieslony, Meret Openheim, Nam June Paik, Markus Raetz, Tracey Rose, Christoph Rütimann, Adrian Schiess, Bill Viola, Rémy Zaugg