Monica Bonvicini

Forget All Instructions

June 14 - July 18, 2015

Galerie Peter Kilchmann is pleased to announce the first solo exhibition at the gallery by the artist Monica

Bonvicini. The exhibition Forget All Instructions. includes works in different media with new interpretations of

themes that have concerned the artist for years.

 The exhibition begins with eight large-format canvases with the title Portraits * (2014/2015), which were

produced in parallel with the sculpture series LATENT COMBUSTION, on show at the 56th Vienna Biennale in

the exhibition All the World's Futures  curated by Okwui Enwezor at the Arsenale. Portraits  literally translates the

process with which these powerful graphic works were created: painted in black they capture images of the

sculptures before and after their creation. The sculpture Leather Cage  (2015) consists of a net that is a visual

reference to S&M leather gear. White Socks  (2006) is the earliest work in the exhibition. The construction worker

boots coated with black rubber show that for many years the artist has been concerned with the subject of

manual work and the male stereotypes connected with it.

The second exhibition room contains new sculptures and prints from the series Warning! which take the

language of operating instructions as their starting point. The texts are a mixture of warnings when using certain

tools and information about S&M utensils. The result tends towards the anarchic and punk-like because,

depending on the context, the term “power tool” can be taken to mean penis or working tool. The theme of

manual work is also present in works such as Corner Boy (2015), a sculpture consisting of leather belts around

a hexahedron (220 x 72 x 72 cm), and Powder Belts, an axe belt fixed to the wall with the axe ready to hand.

With dry humour Bonvicini takes this special kind of literature to an extreme, mistreats it and squeezes it into a

gender-loaded orientation.

Finally, in the last room there is a sculpture from the series LATENT COMBUSTION, which again takes up the

reference to “Portraits”. The sculpture hanging from the ceiling is made up of various chainsaws and an axe

bound with chains and dipped in black polyurethane. The different kinds of chainsaw guide bars protrude from

the monumental conglomeration that simultaneously appears glossy and matt due to its plastic coating. Its sheer

mass creates a weighty, even martial impression, which is however broken by the memory of baroque

chandeliers. On the wall hang the collages Legscutout (2015) which are an almost obsessive accumulation of

body parts. The arms and legs cut from magazines are brought together in both an orderly and chaotic way. The

bodies referred to in the whole exhibition find their expression here.

 LATENT COMBUSTION - the title of this latest sculpture series consisting of a total of six unique pieces -

relates to internal combustion in chainsaw motors and at the same time implies a certain idea of shock, uproar

and tumult. It invokes the loss of handcraft skills in the traditional sense and the latent sea change resulting from

it. For many years the artist has used industrially produced materials such as chains, leather, latex, mirrors and

others as elements of her works and thus picks up on an area between the poles of industrial production and

handcraft. In LATENT COMBUSTION she once again brings together handwork and the readymade. Manually

and industrially produced materials are used to critique certain male power symbols.

Monica Bonvicini was born in 1965 in Venice and now lives and works in Berlin. Since 2003 she has been a

professor for performance art and sculpture at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna. She studied at Berlin

University of the Arts and California Institute of the Arts, Valencia.

Monica Bonvicini’s work is concerned with power structures in architecture, (social) space and relationships.

She analyses their subtle connotations with intelligent historical references and incisively translates them and

comments upon them in the widest range of media. Her works have been shown in numerous solo exhibitions:

at the Lehnbachhaus in Munich, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Basel and the Sculpture Center, NY, to

mention just a few. She has participated at many biennales including the Venice Biennale (2015, 2011, 2005

and 1999), New Orleans Biennale (2008), São Paulo Biennale, Liverpool Biennale (2006) and the Berlin

Biennale (1998, 2003, 2014), again to mention just a few.

 Last year Bonvicini showed a selection of works in the project room at Galerie Peter Kilchmann accompanying

her simultaneous participation at the exhibition Gasträume 2014  in Zurich.