Alumni News |
Alexandra Alexopoulou and Rachel Alliston curate, The Blue Room at Decad
Date: 18 July: 21 September 2019
Hours: Thursday through Saturday, 2 pm to 7 pm
Location: Decad, Gneisenaustrasse 52 10961 Berlin
Curated by: Alexandra Alexopoulou and Rachel Alliston
Featuring work by: Tehnica Schweiz
The Blue Room incorporates a new film and installation—both centered around a recent artistic intervention by Tehnica Schweiz in Tata, Hungary—instigated by the Hungarian government's removal of a national collection from its long-term installation in a former synagogue. The synagogue's building had been repurposed and protected as a museum after the Second World War, housing a group of replicas of classical sculptures. Following the replicas' removal, no future plans for the use or preservation of the former synagogue were announced. In response, Tehnica Schweiz requested and were granted permission to film the collection's removal from the building, and further to use the vacated synagogue as the site for a workshop. For that workshop, drawing on the Jewish-Hungarian tradition of fine porcelain, Tehnica Schweiz members Gergely László and Péter Rákosi organized a group of MA students from the product design course at MOME University, with whom they collaborated on the production of miniature replicas of the ersatz sculptures previously housed in their co-opted building.
The Blue Room explores the relationship between art, architecture, and institution-making in a precarious social-political context where community and history operate intense proximity on the levels of the national and the local. Exhibited at Decad is an edited film comprising footage made during the removal of the museum's collection, documentation of the building itself, and Tehnica Schweiz's own intervention therein. Alongside this film is installed a series of the miniature replicas made during Tehnica Schweiz's workshop in Tata. The film's music has been composed by Berlin-based violist and composer Viktor Bátki. The curator Eszter Lázár has collaborated with Tehnica Schweiz on the series of works entitled The Blue Room throughout their production.
Gergely László (b. 1979, Hungary) and Péter Rákosi (b. 1970, Hungary) formed the artist collective Tehnica Schweiz in 2004. From the start of the artists’ collaboration, all projects and artworks—made together or separately—have been attributed to this shared moniker. Tehnica Schweiz has worked in collaboration with Katarina Šević (b. 1979, Serbia) on a variety of projects since 2010. Rákosi lives and works in Budapest, Hungary while László and Šević have been based in Berlin since 2012. The work of Tehnica Schweiz is rooted in long-term research and intense community collaboration. They have exhibited and performed within international institutions such as 21er Haus Vienna, Archive Cabinet Berlin, Biennale d’art Contemporain in Rennes, ISCP New York, Kiscell Museum Budapest, Le 19 Crac Mobtbéliard, Kunsthaus Dresden, Secession Vienna, Witte de With Rotterdam, Jewish Museum New York, Kunsthalle Budapest, Ernst Museum Budapest and NBK Berlin.