© Alexis Gautier© Alexis Gautier

The German School "Digital Horizon"

An exhibition by Mahya Ketabchi, Nicole Khadivi and Alexis Gautier
Städelschule Film Class

Opening: 10 March 2022, 6 PM GMT
11 March – 14 April 2022

Return Gallery
Goethe-Institut Irland, 37 Merrion Square, Dublin 2

Diagonal Horizon is the fourth exhibition in the programme of exhibitions at the the Goethe-Institut Irland entitled The German School. The series is an initiative of Professor Gerard Byrne and the Film Class at Städelschule, Frankfurt am Main.

Städelschule is one of the most influential art academies globally. Although enrolling less than 150 students, the school attracts students from around the world. Working closely together under the mentorship of internationally known artists, students share interests and concerns informed by the diverse contexts of their upbringings, and collectively affirming a unique artistic Cosmopolitanism, which is reflected in the artworks produced.

For this exhibition, students Mahya Ketabchi (Iran), Nicole Khadivi (Sweden/ Iran) and Alexis Gautier (France) will present recent works in film, audio, sculpture, and spontaneous spatial intervention.

Mahya Ketabchi’s Fragile landscape (2022) is a conversation between sound and drawing, forming a sonic landscape exploring the proximity of multiple senses. Witness with no eyes (2020) is a sound piece that takes as its subject three artworks by three different artists, using oral description of each work to explore what the Greeks called ‘Ekphrasis’, the oral narration of an artwork, drawing out its immanent capacities. A third work by Ketabchi, Braubachstraße (2021) is a photographic document of a street installation in Altstadt Frankfurt, adjacent to the the city’s Museum of Modern Art (MMK).

Nicole Khadivi presents a new film work titled Neither an Overview nor a Close-up, which combines arresting visual footage of animal specimens literally pickled in jars, from several museums including the vast basement storage of the Swedish Natural History Museum, paired alongside a complex and engaging monologue which is unmistakably the voice of a gruff older Swedish gentleman. The monologue he recounts however, has a less typically Swedish origin, as it reiterates a comment Khadivi received whilst scrutinising an archive of photographs of her family, both before and after their migration from Iran to Sweden in the wake of the Iranian Revolution.

Alexis Gautier is based in Brussels but more often works with artists and craftspeople in Asia or elsewhere, to produce artefacts that bear witness to the complexities of globalisation, colonialism, and artistic practice. He provokes encounters and dialogue, reflecting on the notion of exchange and value, as well as on authorship and the protocols of exhibition-making.

For Diagonal Horizon Gautier has developed three site-responsive interventions. For Bibliomancy (2022), Gautier used the fragment of a book found in the Goethe-Institut library (Speculations about Jakob, Uwe Johnson), fragmenting the text extract over 61 doors dividing the institute in rooms and corridors. Two others gestures are equally dispersed throughout the building, including a series of charcoal drawings displayed on the institute’s information boards (Fabulations, 2022), as well as a series of porcelain works (Door Hinges, 2022) responding to the ceramic fungus works of Bernard Schneider, which were kept on the wall since previous editions of The German School exhibition. 

“The German School” is presented by the Goethe-Institut Irland in collaboration with the Städelschule.

Supported by Städelschule Portikus e.V.

Gallery Opening Hours

Monday - Thursday 9:00am – 9:30pm
Friday 9:00am – 5.00pm
Saturday 9:00am – 3:00pm
Closed on Saturdays of Bank Holidays

Contact: Goethe-Institut Irland, +353 (01) 680 1100, info-dublin@goethe.de or visit Goethe.de/irland