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Staatliche Kunsthalle Baden-Baden
Lichtentaler Allee 8a
76530 Baden-Baden
Germany
Tel. +49 (0)7221-300763
 
 

 
Christopher Williams
For Example: Dix-Huit Leçons Sur La Société Industrielle (Revision 11)
 
Sat 06/12 – Sun 08/29, 2010
Press conference: Thu 06/10/2010, 11am / Opening: Fri 06/11/2010, 7pm
 
 
Christopher Williams, RITTERSPORT, 2009
 
RITTERSPORT
Von oben nach unten / from the top to the bottom
100 g Tafeln / 100 g Bars
 
Offizieller Produktname / Official Product Name / EAN Code  Bar / UPC Code for Case / Bars per Case Voll Nuss / Whole Hazelnuts / 4000417019004 / 050255013005 / 10
Joghurt / Yogurt / 40004170270 09  / 050255027000 / 12
Voll Erdnuss / 4000417262202 / 10
Weisse Voll Nuss / White Whole Hazelnuts / 4000417013002  / 050255013003 / 10
Marzipan / Marzipan / 4000417025005 / 050255025006 /12
Cappuccino / Cappuccino / 40004172300 03 /  0550255230042 /12
October 24th (No. 1), 2008
2009
 
Archival Pigment Print on Cotton Rag Paper
85,6 x 94,2 cm (framed)
Edition of 10
Courtesy Galerie Gisela Capitain, Cologne
 
 
In the summer of 2010, the Staatliche Kunsthalle Baden-Baden will present an exhibition of works by the American artist Christopher Williams (b. Los Angeles 1956).
The show is the next installment in Williams’ exhibition series For Example: Dix-Huit Leçons Sur La Société Industrielle featuring both older pieces and a set of new works by the artist.
Williams graduated from the renowned California Institute of the Arts (CalArts), where he studied under John Baldessari and Douglas Huebler; he is professor at the Academy of Fine Arts in Düsseldorf. He is regarded as one of the most important representatives of the tradition of Conceptualism in contemporary art. Yet the conceptual framework of the artist’s work is complicated by his emphasis on the visual and technical quality of his pictures, contrasting with the processes of many first generation Conceptual artists whose traditions he is working within. Like other artists of his generation, Christopher Williams believes that as media decisively shapes our society, there is political significance in questioning images. In installations, performances, videos, and, most importantly, photographs, he examines how aesthetic conventions and their dissemination affect our understanding of reality. Since the late 1980s, he has heavily relied on the motifs and forms of ex isting images, borrowing from the advertising and cultural context. Professional technicians are hired to photograph the subjects that he chooses, producing images of animals, plants, industrial products, modernist architecture, and people, with great technical precision. His subjects are often depicted from an objective distance, isolating them in the picture by setting them against neutral backdrops. But Williams’ images are never re-touched, and so diverge from the ‘perfection’ of commercial images by retaining tiny and almost imperceptible flaws or moments of disturbance. 
 
 
Christopher Williams, Kodak Three Point Reflection Guide, 2005
 
Kodak Three Point Reflection Guide,
© 1968 Eastman Kodak Company, 1968.
(Meiko laughing)
Vancouver, B.C.
April 6, 2005
2005
 
C-print
Photograph: 50,8 x 61 cm; 20 x 24 inches
Framed: 86,7 x 96 cm; 34 x 37 3/4 inches
Ed. of 10 + 4 AP
Courtesy Galerie Gisela Capitain, Cologne
 
 
The artist acts in a manner of a director, staging the images and then having them meticulously printed, often using traditional printing methods that are on the verge of obsolescence.
Another important component of Williams’ work are the titles of his pictures, which usually inform the viewer of the technical and commercial data about the subject, the name of the photographer and the studio in which it was photographed, the date of the execution, and the materials and processed used. The viewer is thus forever caught between the contemplation of ‘beautiful’ photographs and an artist’s meditations on photography, a reflexive and utterly un-nostalgic tightrope walk between the medium’s history and its future.
 
 
Christopher Williams, Untitled (Study in Red), 2009
 
Untitled (Study in Red)
Dirk Schaper Studio, Berlin,
April 30th, 2009
2009
 
Archival Pigment Print
71 x 64 cm (framed)
Courtesy Galerie Gisela Capitain, Cologne
 
 
The catalogue with essays by Mark Godfrey and Karola Kraus is published by Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther König, Cologne, German/English.
 
 
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