6 November 2011 – 22 January 2012

Breitseite - Im Fokus: Raum

Villa Merkel


The Breitseite – Im Fokus: Raum (Broadside – In focus: space)  exhibition addresses artistic positions concerned with both the interior of space – especially exhibition spaces – and also the externals of spatial structure. The view of the exterior of a spatial structure and seeing the interior are driven by various artistic approaches.

The rooms in the Villa Merkel are analysed, processed and changed. New forms of perception emerge, concrete and applied experience come to light.

Breitseite – Im Fokus: Raum features sculptures that create an individual spatial structure and transform the exhibition space itself.

Breitseite – Im Fokus:Raum features photographs that reinterpret spatial structures from the outside and explore the interior of a space.


Curated by: Maria Wäsch

29 May – 29 August 2011

Darren Almond – Nocturne

Villa Merkel

Darren Almond – Nocturne is a solo exhibition of one of the most outstanding British contemporary artists at Villa Merkel. The transience of time in the fleeting moment of beauty: works in various media – photography, film or installation – show where Darren Almond’s interests lie.

He addresses subjects such as signs of the times, landscape and journeys, and also political and historical memory. The fleeting quality of a moment, the fragility of human existence, all this is shown to viewers. New works were specially realised for Darren Almond – Nocturne.

They supplement a recurrent serial of time exposures of various landscapes under the full moon, work against that fleeting quality to a certain extent. Several minutes flow into each other, time seems to stand still. The six-channel video work called sometimes still from 2010 focuses on an apparently endless religious ritual. After a long preparatory meditation session, a monk sets off on a prayer march, following a prescribed route through open countryside. In this video installation, the viewer himself becomes a protagonist, living through the ritual vicariously: nothing stands still, everything is in a state of flux.

The catalogue was published by snoeck Verlag, Köln.

Darren Almond – Nocturne was supported by The British Council.

29 May – 31 July 2011

Jens Bogner – Approximately Even


With Jens Bogner – Approximately even the Bahnwärterhaus presence an extensive solo exhibition of the artist and art facilitator living in Esslingen. In a sophisticated form of Ars Combinatoria in Jens Bogner’s work and installations various aspects, materials, and captured objects find each other to reflect in a very subtle way the history of art, such as the Japanese woodblock, and above all, organic processes such as algae growth or the change of different states of aggregation. Liquid converts in crystalline objects; hardly controllable processes make room for incidental and accidental processes and products. Time and volatility as well as fragility and the present moment are of a central importance to these works of art.

These aspects combine and bridge the exhibitions in the Bahnwärterhaus and the Villa Merkel: Jens Bogner who has by the way studied at the State Academy of Fine Arts in Karlsruhe, is a most attentive observer. His alchemist kitchen makes curious, because it offers surprises.

27 February – 8 May 2011

Alexandra Maurer – Contremouvements

Villa Merkel

Alexandra Maurer calls her video sequences “peinture animée” – and indeed these are not “pure” filmic works, but a kind of cross-fade using a whole variety of artistic techniques: performance, video, painting and computer-aided animation all feature. Alexandra Maurer’s work does literally move between the media, addressing the ambivalence of images placed between dance-like movements and the destructive potential of violence. The first impression contrasts with this: everything is highly colourful, almost cheerful, intensively moved and in any case always choreographed in depth.

Alexandra Maurer was awarded the MANOR-Kunstpreis St. Gallen in 2010, and the exhibition “Alexandra Maurer – Contremouvements” came into being as a result of this. It is a co-operation between the Kunstmuseum St. Gallen and Villa Merkel, Galerien der Stadt Esslingen am Neckar.

The exhibition is supported by the Swiss Pro Helvetia cultural foundation.

The catalogue of the same title was published by the Verlag für moderne Kunst Nürnberg.

Alexandra Maurer, b. 1978 in St. Gallen, lives in Geneva.

27 February – 8 May 2011

The Keno Twins 4

Group show curated by Michael Bauer
Villa Merkel

Michael Bauer is assembling The Keno Twins 4 group exhibition on the top floor of the Villa Merkel. His subjectively motivated, iconological comparison is showing works by Horst Ademeit, Steven Claydon,

Michaela Eichwald, Alasdair Gray, Charlie Hammond, Chris Hipkiss, Aurel Iselstöger, Robert Kraiss, Fabian Marti, J.B. Murray, Michel Nedjar, David Noonan,

Dietrich Orth, Michail Paule, Stefanie Popp, Aurie Ramirez, Sava Sekulić, Renee So, Miroslav Tichý, Oskar Voll, August Walla, George Widener, Agatha Wojciechowsky and Mark van Yetter.

Michael Bauer, b. 1973 in Erkelenz, lives in Berlin.

27 February – 8 May 2011

Michael Bauer – K-HOLE (FROGS)

Villa Merkel


The Michael Bauer: K-Hole exhibition is like — a conglomerate of sculpture, painting and display architecture, luring us away to extremely strange, quite psychedelic worlds. Figurations grow out of patches of dirt and clots of colour, interspersed with heraldic shapes, accompanied by ornaments:


grey brown shadow worlds, rising above any hint of a notion of purity. The atrium of the Villa Merkel becomes a K-Hole like a roundabout, in fact like a spinning top, massively misaligned, with free geometry.

A catalogue will be published by the Verlag für moderne Kunst Nürnberg.

Michael Bauer, b. 1973 in Erkelenz, lives in Berlin.