Daniel Roth - Inland
Opening: Friday, 29. March 2007 at 7:00 p.m
Press Conference, 29. March 2007 at 12:00 am
In his space-encompassing installations, Daniel Roth tells stories which draw the viewer into unfathomable parallel worlds. Roth’s paths begin at spaces and sites which are familiar to him from his own biography or which he has encountered during his travels. He investigates the surroundings in detail, analyzes their context, and embarks upon a subtly differentiated search for revelatory details.
Roth concentrates upon objects which are enveloped by mystery, which are not freely accessible or have utterly disappeared from consciousness. These sites and their inhabitants become real points of departure for fictional narrations which the artist imagines in connection to the selected objects of investigation and presents in the exhibition space as new “realities.” In this way, the original typographies and biographies are augmented with new definitions.
For example the point of connection for a multipartite cycle of works is Roth’s home town Schramberg in the Black Forest. As envisioned by the artist, Schramberg lies buried beneath a layer of concrete and leads a mysterious existence below the impenetrable surface. Boreholes in the concrete provide access to five selected houses. The entry into one of the five houses, the former shoemaking workshop “Weller Volker,” is quoted by walls, holes for gaining access, and views into the exhibition hall. The subterranean living circumstances give rise to new types of work and economic processes in the town. Now being grown in the shoemaking workshop, for instance, are stones which may be found as signs in the exhibition.
All works by Daniel Roth are based on a clearly perceptible fascination with the border area between reality and fiction. He is concerned with the margins of those social systems establishing order and representation, with the gradual transition from so-called reality into fictional spaces. Since Roth stages his stories for the exhibitions as authentically as possible, the viewer of his installations must ask where reality stops and vision begins.
In order to extend this playing with reality and fiction into even the tiniest details, Roth includes in his installations highly diverse formats which lay claim to truthfulness for that which is represented. In addition to site-specific, architectural insertions and alterations, it is above all items from the seemingly documentary media such as photographs and slides, but also the artist’s own texts, drawings or artificially created objects, out of which this fictional cosmos is composed. These testimonies can make quite complex and specific references to the object to be conveyed, or may simply hint at its broad outlines.
It is precisely this atmospheric openness in Roth’s narratives which constitutes the particular attractive power of his works and awakens in the viewer a curious urge to penetrate deeper into the stories.
With Inland the Badischer Kunstverein is presented the first comprehensive exhibition in Germany of works by Daniel Roth.
Daniel Roth, born in 1969 in Schramberg, studied at the State Academy of Fine Arts in Karlsruhe and today lives in Amsterdam. Among other awards, the artist has received the Horst-Janssen-Preis (2005) and the Preis der Leipziger Volkszeitung (2003). Roth has already been represented in various national and international exhibitions, among them Lichtkunst aus Kunstlicht (Luminous Art out of Artificial Illumination) at the ZKM Karlsruhe in 2006, or the Manifesta in San Sebastian in 2004.