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VILMA GOLD presents PHILIPP TIMISCHL | LYNN HERSHMAN LEESON

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19 Mar 2016 to 16 Apr 2016
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2
Philipp Timischl
19 March - 16 April 2016
12


Artists in this exhibition: Philipp Timischl, Lynn Hershman Leeson


2
Philipp Timischl
Vilma Gold, London
19 March - 16 April 2016

Vilma Gold presents a solo show by Vienna-based artist Philipp Timischl.Philipp Timischl combines and recycles images and text fragments from various sources such as tv-series, advertisements and conversations and connects them with personal imagery and paintings in installations, which are reconfigured from one exhibition to the next. His works occur in different formulations, densities and media, changing their identity while drifting between various contexts and settings. They often behave like frequently copied files which progressively lose volume and information such as their origin.

For his exhibition at Vilma Gold, titled “2”, he’s showing a new series of sculptures, each consisting of two objects which can be seen as autonomous people facing each other in a sort of dialogue situation. Like in his previous works, where he combined elements such as flatscreen monitors and paintings on top of each other, he now too involves his imagery in reciprocal relationships. Consisting of basic elements such as image, frame and plinth, they imitate anti-theft antennas as often seen in shops, libraries or Duty Free at airports, regulating the transition from one territorial zone to the other. Control, desire and communication are equally addressed.

In their emptiness the images in Timischl’s Work resemble stock-photos and the text fragments he chooses are similarly generic. In contrast to that he uses a small picture of a drag queen and an appropriated silver earring with the abbreviation “masc”, both of which are more specific and hint at identity and its fluid construction. In this sense one could also further see the other, less distinct imagery, as hinting at non binary figures and styles. These ideas are underlined with titles such as “Dysfunctional Setup”, “Significant Other” or “High 5 and Low 5”. Timischl is less interested in individual images or their specific statements, but more so in their movement, correlation and the in-between. His images are constantly changing their reference system and are activated while floating between in out, front back, positive negative and the presence and absence of their form.

The works are not locked into these oppositions like a closed circuit, on the contrary they rather open up the communication towards the viewer. When the audience steps between the two elements of these anti theft antennas, the discrete communication in the magnetic field of sender and receiver gets disturbed, forcing the alarm to start or respectively the system to mobilize. In a metaphorical sense this means: the image isn’t static. It’s a correlating situation, forming countless constellations.

Translated from german
Text by Anette Freudenberger

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Lynn Turning into Roberta
Lynn Hershman Leeson
Vilma Gold, London
19 March - 16 April 2016

Lynn Turming into Roberta, 1978, video, colour, sound, 5:24 min (16 mm transferred into digital)

Lynn Hershman Leeson’s Lynn Turning into Roberta documents Hersman Leeson’s transformation into Roberta Breitmore. The artist is shown applying Roberta’s signature makeup, donning a wig, and assuming the persona of her fictitious creation.

With a practice spanning more than forty years, Hershman Leeson has worked in performance, moving image, drawing, collage, text-based work, site-specific interventions, and later new media / digital technologies, and interactive net-based works, making her one of the first truly multi-disciplinary artists. In the pantheon of feminist artists, she also holds a special place, having investigated the question of gender, identity politics, and selfhood – a key field of interest in her practice – in-depth, over time and with a complexity that far surpasses many of her peers. This complexity is best manifested in Hershman Leeson’s seminal project The Roberta Breitmore Series (1974-1978). Nearly forty years on, the importance of The Roberta Breitmore Series cannot be over-estimated. The questions it raised about the ungraspable, fluid state of identity, about ‘truth’ and ‘authenticity’, the difficulty to often draw the line between fact and fiction, biography and autobiography, the impossibility – perhaps – of entirely achieving that ancient Greek dictum of ‘knowing thyself’, the question of how appearances deceive, and the fundamental constructedness of identity remain; perhaps now stronger than ever given the advent of the internet and the emergence of virtual identities; and of course the increased importance attached to image and self-styling in our ‘lifestyle’ conscious culture of appearances.

From 1974 until 1978, the artist conceived of, constructed and ‘developed’ a fictional persona and alter ego: that of Roberta Breitmore. The creation of Roberta Breitmore consisted not only of a physical self-transformation through make-up, clothing, and wigs which enabled the occasional role-playing, but a fully-fledged, ‘complete’ personality who existed over an extended period of time and whose existence could be proven in the world through physical evidence: from a driver’s license and credit card to letters from her psychiatrist.

Text by Katerina Gregos

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For further information or images please contact Martin Rasmussen: +44 (0)20 7729 9888 or: martin@vilmagold.com.


www.vilmagold.com






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