Artist: Josef Dabernig
Exhibition title: River Plate
Venue: Lulu, Mexico City
Date: August 13 – September 18, 2016
Photography: all images copyright and courtesy of the artist and Lulu
Lulu is proud to present the exhibition River Plate by the Austrian, Vienna-based artist Josef Dabernig.
Known for his exploration of social systems, post-wall Eastern European, brutalist architecture, conceptual austerity, and dry humor, Josef Dabernig’s practice comprises film, photography, texts, objects and space-related concepts. At Lulu he will be presenting the film River Plate (2013) as well as a selection of black-and-white photographs of location shots taken for the film. Shot in black-and-white Super-16, blown up to 35mm and transferred onto HD video, the short, sixteen minute work depicts a group of seemingly unrelated people gathering and sun bathing in a river which bears the damaged traces of industrial construction under an underpass in a seemingly alpine, undisclosed European location. According to the artist: “River Plate displays a micro society in a fragmented body-narration. Knees, shoulders, feet and bellies are signifiers of articulated human presence, revealing nothing else against a claustrophobic background of cement, stone and water.” At once wry, troubling, and utterly strange, River Plate nevertheless wields an understated lyrical quality which has less do with any kind expressiveness than with a compositional rigor and beauty that strictly governs each shot.
Josef Dabernig (b. 1956, Kötschach-Mauthen, Austria) lives and works in Vienna. A selection of recent solo exhibitions includes: Wilfried Lentz, Rotterdam (2015); Galerie Andreas Huber, Vienna (2014); and the extensive survey, Rock the Void, Mumok – museum moderner kunst, stiftung ludwig wien, Vienna (2014). His work has been featured in Manifesta biennial (St Petersburg, 2014, and Ljubljana, 2000), the Gwangju Biennale (2012), and the Venice biennale (2003 and 2001). His films have also been screened in numerous film festivals including the International Short Film Festival Oberhausen, International Film Festival Rotterdam, and Venice Film Festival. He is currently preparing solo exhibitions at Kunsthalle Winterthur, Winterthur, Switzerland (2016) and Badischer Kunstverein, Karlsruhe, Germany (2017).
Josef Dabernig, River Plate, 2013 (film excerpt)
Super-16 to 35mm and transferred onto HD video, 16min