As part of the collaborative project STADT/BILD (Image of a City), the Nationalgalerie is showing Fluids. A Happening by Allan Kaprow, 1967/2015 in the Berlin urban space. Allan Kaprow (1927 – 2006) is one of the most influential and at the same time least known artists of the second half of the 20th century. He coined the term 'happening', but his own work was largely forgotten because of the object-less nature of his artistic practice. Fluids was first created October 1967 at various public locations in California. With the assistance of volunteers, Kaprow built several structures measuring around 9 m long, 3 m wide and 2.4 m high, using ice blocks as his material. Once in place, these ice structures were simply left to melt. In its temporality and materiality, the work represents a challenge to the traditional understanding of art in public space.
What endures of Fluids and the happenings of the 1950s and 1960s? How do we approach this happening retrospectively, nine years after the artist's death? Kaprow had his own answer: 'While there was an initial version of Fluids, there isn't an original or permanent work. Rather, there is an idea to do something and a physical trace of that idea. … Fluids continues and its reinventions further multiply its meanings.'
Five 'reinventions' of Fluids will be taking place at various locations in Berlin during Berlin Art Week. The Nationalgalerie has invited Berlin-based artists Olivier Guesselé-Garai, Assaf Gruber, Antje Majewski, Agnieszka Polska and Juliane Solmsdorf; Ahmet Öğüt; Alexandra Pirici and the artist's group Stadt im Regal to create their own contemporary responses to Allan Kaprow's happening.
Curated by Udo Kittelmann and Lisa Marei Schmidt
More information about the project and locations: http://kaprowinberlin.smb.museum/en/
STADT/BILD is a collaboration between the Berlinische Galerie, the Deutsche Bank KunstHalle, KW Institute for Contemporary Art, and the Nationalgalerie – Staatliche Museen to Berlin. Opening during Berlin Art Week. Initiated and supported by the Mayor of Berlin, Senate Department of Cultural Affairs.
More information about the project at stadt-bild.berlin