23,0 x 29,7 cm, 176 pages
Editor Kunstverein Dillingen, Autocenter Berlin
Texts by Konrad Bitterli, Andreas Schlaegel
German / English
Shila Khatami works bring the geometric shapes she encounters in everyday life into focus. The historic constructivists and their failed ambitions to change society to the reemergence of geometry in industrial and product design in the 1950s, and again in the 1980s act as a point of reference.
The artist fascination is build up on the variety and changing role of geometric design elements in today’s daily life.
Using the artists vast image archive as the source of practice the catalogue shows a curated selection of exhibition views, studio views, single reproductions and images Khatami takes of everyday forms she runs into.
The “non pleasing” and odd nature of Khatami’s oeuvre and the matching rawness, immediate and daily nature of fashion magazines worked as an inspiring folio to design the catalogue without any white space, chapters, content page or any other usual means of an artist monograph.
„…the black-and-white checkered flag waved at the finish line of Formula 1 races, for example, looks like it might be an archetype of abstract painting.”
Khatami shoots images as a diary. The catalogue is the first to present these photographs to trace the complete course from the initial compositional inspiration to the origin of the painting to its presentation in the exhibition.
Two texts by Konrad Bitterli and Andreas Schlegel interrupt the coherent image sequence without any warning. The placement of the texts appear to be random. Still the texts pages are chosen to intertwine into the threads and connections of Khatami’s work layed out into the catalogue pages.
Every named work lists the page numbers on which the work appears in the monograph: the reader is asked to flip back and forth. Interrupting the reading itself the reader draws his/her own lines in-between the artist’s work and it’s counterpart.
The title Straight Edge of the catalogue is taken literally. The work specifications and page numbers are printed throughout the bottom of every page and form a straight line. Thus a moment of Khatami’s work is translated into the catalogue: the controlled chance. Collected as an data sheet these specifications are listed on the first pages of the catalogue.
The catalogue is an immerse experience into a 176 page long sequence of mobile phone-, digital camera images and high-tech reproductions. While the place of origin of every image changes again and again with every page between the studio, the gallery space, the shop window and the street, the catalogue draws connections between these different point of origin and thus reveals the threads within Khatami’s work.
Straight Edge offers a comprehensive insight into Shila Khatami’s work by examining the artist imagery and vocabulary. Designed in a phone book-like manner the catalogue discloses the different levels of the creative process into a new way of reading Khatami’s body of work.
TRANSLATION INTO THE GALLERY SPACE
CLAGES, JANUARY 16 – FEBRUARY 20, 2016
Followed by the publications release in Fall 2015 the solo show ‘miscellaneous’ at Clages, Cologne translates and executes the working method of the catalogue into the exhibition space. Here for the first time Khatami shows those threads between her image diary and her own work the catalogue traced down.
Gallery Samy Abraham, December 19, 2015 Paris
Autocenter Berlin, December 12, 2015, Berlin