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OFF SEASON by RICHARD FRATER at KUNSTVEREIN MÜNCHEN [from 20230128 to 20230423]
[Photos: Maximilian Geuter]
Richard Frater develops his artworks departing from the built environment and the fragile nature inherentto the relations between organisms. For his first institutional solo exhibition in Europe, Off season, theAotearoa-born artist attends to the Kunstverein München and its building as a (supposedly) public spacethrough a series of interventions that are sensitive to the site. Based on an examination of the architectureand locality of the edifice as well as an interest in the (de)privatization of space, Frater has developedseveral new works, all of which move along specific axes of the Kunstverein building. They extend fromthe regular exhibition spaces into their periphery, namely the attic and surrounding parks, thus allowingfor new perspectives within and beyond the institution.
The Kunstverein is embedded in an urban landscape that is by no means solely inhabited by humans;cities have always also been populated by other living beings. The social behaviors and spatial practicesof wildlife are self-organized. They, too, have found ways of integrating into urban environments that areoften hostile to their livelihood. With the works on view—spatio-sculptural interventions such as awalkable scaffolding revealing a (bird’s) view out the windows as well as a flight tunnel for the aerialdwellers, —Frater addresses the ways in which space is produced by humans irrespective of the needsof other species and advocates for establishing adequate spaces of cohabitation. Moreover, the artistproposes to reimagine the kind of public sphere(s) that institutions like the Kunstverein München canserve. In the year of the association’s bicentennial, such considerations are of particular relevance inorder to negotiate its future and the spaces it will access, need, lose, or make available to others.
[Text: Kunstverein München]
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