May 1 - August 25, 2019
Outstretched arms in white latex gloves slowly rotate. Dozens of them seem to dance through the deserted production hall in symmetrical choreography like in a Hollywood musical from the 1940s. Vanessa Safavi (*1980) filmed the silent ballet in a small Indian factory for disposable gloves. "Velvet" is the first cinematic work by the Swiss artist, who recently attracted attention with brightly colored sculptures made of bus and train stop poles bent into space and with crumpled up pink silicone mats that she locked up in wire mesh boxes. Here, too, the focus was on movement, skin and touch. She shot her latest video as part of the "Fürstenberg Contemporary" art project scholarship program, to which the hereditary princes Christian and Jeanette zu Fürstenberg from Donaueschingen have been inviting three young artists to the family-owned Heiligenberg Castle not far from Lake Constance every year since 2011. In 2018, Safavi was joined by Paris-based Canadian Zin Taylor (*1978) and Puerto Rican-born New Yorker Juan Antonio Olivares (*1988).
They are now showing their work together in the eighth scholarship holder show in the historic rooms of the Karlshof in Donaueschingen. Safavi flanks her video work on the relationship between body, machine, grace and repetition with a series of casually arranged stuffed parrots, which build a bridge to the thousands of animal specimens in the display cases of the Fürstenberg Collections in the halls below. Zin Taylor has also brought nature into the room in the form of dead matter and presents wilting meadow flowers in minimalist ceramic settings, behind which a huge panoramic drawing meanders across the walls as an airy reflection on the function of the line in transforming the world into an image. Finally, Juan Antonio Olivares complements this almost dreamlike synopsis of the disparate with the HD robinsonade of a young couple in search of the place where they meet and with delicate silverpoint drawings of black holes, for which he was inspired by swarms of meteorites in the summer night sky over Lake Constance.
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