Jonathan Meese at Tim Van Laere Gallery

Jonathan Meese, COLONEL K.U.N.S.T. AM START!, 2017. Acrylic, mixed media, caparol-dispersion binder and acrylic gel on canvas, 270.3 x 180.2 x 4 cm. Courtesy Jonathan Meese and Tim Van Laere Gallery, Antwerp. Photo: Jan Bauer.

Jonathan Meese

March 23–May 12, 2017

Tim Van Laere Gallery 
Verlatstraat 23-25
2000 Antwerp
Hours: Tuesday–Friday 11am–6pm,
Saturday 1–6pm

Tim Van Laere Gallery is pleased to announce “E.T.” VS. “DR. IDEOLOGY” (JOHNNY FUZZY M. SINCLAIR), the third solo exhibition of Jonathan Meese.

Jonathan Meese (1970, Tokyo, lives and and works in Berlin and Hamburg) is renowned for his multi-faceted work, including wildly exuberant paintings, installations, ecstatic performances and a powerful body of sculptures in a variety of media. Apparently effortlessly, he has developed in all genres an independent and at the same time unique vocabulary that gives his work a variety, visual energy and quality which, according to Robert Fleck, has been unheard of since Picasso. All of Meese’s work share a humor tending towards the grotesque, as well as a powerful, original creative will. Both are driven and supported by a striving for a rule of art, the dictatorship of art. What is meant here is the development of a new world order where art is the legislative power, and free play the foundation of all life and creation. This utopian approach runs like a leitmotif through all his works and brings his individual parts of the oeuvre together to form the Jonathan Meese Gesamtkunstwerk. He does not aim at anarchy, but rather the rule of metabolic necessity: “Art is total play.” From this principle, he deconstructs, ornamentalises and caricatures all forms, words, and symbols, stripping them of their original semantic meaning.

For this exhibition Jonathan Meese  is presenting a new series of works focusing on science fiction. His works are starring Mr. Spock, ufologist Robert Dean, Darth Vader, Stanley Kubrick, UFO’s, John Boorman’s Zardoz, Edgar Wallace and extraterrestrial lifeforms. Science fiction has grown as a genre not only concerned with science, but by the 70s also with consequences. It asked “What if?” What if the world in which we live is not the reality? What if there was an alternative universe with different laws and institutions? As Rod Serling defines: “fantasy is the impossible made probable. Science fiction is the improbable made possible.” This statement can also be made about art. In contrast to culture, art has no boundaries. “E.T” VS. “DR. IDEOLOGY”, art vs. culture.  

As Jonathan Meese states in his manifest: “In the exhibition “E.T.” VS. “DR. IDEOLOGY” (JOHNNY FUZZY M. SINCLAIR) there will be many paintings, a round table, sculptures, photos, manifests and maybe a video. All this material is FUTURE. All this material has no Ideology. All this material is LOVE. All this material is Dictatorship of Art. Johnny Meese builds a Space-Ship of Total Art. The Gallery-Space is the Commander’s Headquarters of Total Art. Art is Total Love. The “Round Table” is the wheel of Total Animalism. Johnny M. is the 1. Soldier of Total Art.”

Jonathan Meese has exhibited globally with museums and leading art galleries including solo shows at Gem, The Hague; CAC Málaga, Málaga; Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami; De Appel Center for Contemporary Art, Amsterdam; group shows at Museu de Arte de São Paulo, São Paulo; Guggenheim Museum, New York; Martin-Gropius-Bau, Berlin; National Center for Contemporary Art, Moscow; MARTa Herford, Herford; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; The Saatchi Gallery, London; MoMA PS1 Contemporary Art Center, New York.

Jonathan Meese at Tim Van Laere Gallery

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