June 1 until July 15, 2017

On the Basis of Trust

Daniel Maier-Reimer travels. During each of his trips, he takes a photo. But it is not him, who exhibits the photo. Rather, he invites others to choose one of his trips. What those who are invited, in fact, do with this trip—where they display the photo or leave it behind—is all about the journey. This time Till Krause is Maier-Reimer’s guest; the two had already collaborated once in the Villa Romana. Till Krause chose Daniel Maier-Reimer’s trip to that tall, Asian mountain range, the Pamirs, which Maier-Reimer hiked in Tajikistan. Till Krause displays the photo in three rooms next to wall hangings, in which the word “PAMIR” is omitted, except that the borders of the omission are colorfully accentuated.  There are more of these wall hangings, but they are still travelling, used as stencils to furnish regions somewhere in Europe and China with the word “Pamir.” Where? We won’t know. We also know little of what Daniel Maier-Reimer’s journeys were like, what he experienced on them.

So, everything is the journey, including what happens to it.  There is no substance, no evidence of great deeds or letters. Did it then occur? –  Daniel Maier-Reimer and Till Krause read from a 134 year-old (to the month) issue of the magazine “The Chautauquan.” Daniel and Till, it sounds like two childhood friends snickering, entranced as they leaf through the old monthly copy of the Chautauqua Literary and Scientific Circle’s “devotion to the dissemination of true culture,” until one of the text’s questions captivates them: “If a tree falls on a deserted island, does it make a sound?“ Daniel can’t let go of this question, often attributed to the ironic philosopher George Berkley.  Have I done something, if nobody witnessed it? Some criminal novels answer this question with “yes,” but that’s also the function of a criminal novel, or so it seemed to him at the time. Fascinated by the idea of being invisible, he began to travel as a young man.

Perhaps Daniel Maier-Reimer is not at all interested in nothing. Instead he tries to apprehend the something. What is his essence? What sensory foundation does reality require?  It would be possible to imagine the photo as some stain of nature, imprinted on a small, otherwise unlabeled package. In this package there is a small, similarly unlabeled bottle; if they spread the beads contained inside the bottle anywhere across the floor, they roll, as if by the hand of a spirit, into a formation, from which the word “PAMIR” can be read.

Till Krause may well agree with this idea of essence. Krause materialized the effective volatility of its homeopathic character in the transient lettering, which are placed by friends and acquaintances through his stencils. And if not?  If they have only carelessly colored-in the borders of the letters? “Is art only assertion,” he asks himself like so many before him have and not only since Duchamp.

Or has he already made his mind up long ago and it is just me that asks? Please understand, dear reader, why I am so impudent as to turn the spotlight of a text about two artists onto me: Everything here exerts power, controls associations and assumptions and, thereby, corrupts the art, because art might only require at once a (hopefully) good friend and a confidant. “Is art trust?”.

Now Daniel and Till snicker as they did with the magazine— the snickering of a question’s captives.

Oliver Tepel