Loading Events
judith hopf

Nose up!

Badischer Kunstverein, Karlsruhe
  • This event has passed.

nose up!

“Nose up!” is the title given by the artist Judith Hopf to her exhibition in the Badischer Kunstverein; it thereby marks an important point of reference for her new works.

In Nose up! the artist focuses with various media and forms of expression upon the phenomenon of the history of lying. One symbol frequently used in literature for lying is the human nose, whose incessant growth in length—as in the case of Pinocchio—or sudden fall from the face—as in the story “The Nose” by Nicolai W. Gogol—is evaluated as a sign of dishonesty, instability or the loss of control. Just as already in earlier projects, in “Nose up!” Judith Hopf is concerned with an investigation of widespread social conventions. The media which she uses here are video, sculpture and graphic art. Her focus is directed towards both the possibilities and the actual development of an oppositional potential.

Judith Hopf conceives of her artistic practice as part of a collective process. Many projects have been realized in collaboration with artists and theoreticians who are her friends. During the nineteen-nineties, Hopf organized the “supersalons” in Berlin, a program series with women from art and theory, film and fashion. Since 2003 she has created videos, together with the filmmaker Deborah Schamoni, under the name “Atelier Hopfmann.” Two of them, “Elevator Curator” (2005) and “Hospital Bone Dance” (2006), are being shown in the exhibition.

In Judith Hopf’s involvement with the role of the artist, a major role is played by her delight in humorous self-staging—for example, in the figure of the “European curator” Elodie Schneider in the film “Elevator Curator.” It is characteristic of Hopf’s artistic projects that she leaves their manners of thought and observation open, so that they lay down neither didactic nor moral guidelines. Instead her works feature a palpable interest in Pop aesthetic, the formal language of modernism and everyday taste. Judith Hopf draws attention to that which is lacking, which suddenly emerges into view or thwarts expectations.

In “Hospital Bone Dance,” the disciplined everyday life of a nurse is thrown into disarray by mysterious events. This sort of irritation is smoothly continued in the formal realization in the exhibition space—for instance, when the graphic works “Nasen” (Noses, 2008) are done in the Op Art tradition of someone like Bridget Riley, or bamboo stems are made from fragile drinking glasses. Just as the nose proves to be an unstable terrain of the body, just as the lie undermines supposedly prevalent forms of communication, so do the sculptural protagonists inject confusion into our pre-established systems of knowledge and reception.