Michael Müller


Erste kleine Probe für Nietzsches Geburtstagsparty 2313
Not open to the public: July 2, 2015, 6–9 pm

July 4 – September 12, 2015

Die Welt interessiert sich nicht für den Sinn (Window Space)
July 4 – September 19, 2015

Nachspiel: Wesen und Inhalt einer großen Idee
September 14 – 19, 2015

Zweite kleine Probe für Nietzsches Geburtstagsparty 2313
September 16, 2015, 6–9 pm

Michael Müller’s current exhibitions “Berührung” in the main space of the gallery and “Die Welt interessiert sich nicht für den Sinn” in the Window Space are the continuation of his 18-part exhibition cycle, which he began in 2013 at Galerie Thomas Schulte.

Anew, the artist creates a multimedia cosmos on the basis of a dense system of references.  As the title of one of the exhibitions reveals, it is about “Berührung” (contacts). The panorama of objects, pictures, and installations encompasses not only material and immaterial shapes or real and unreal, but also the profane, as well as the sacred ideas of making contact. The relationship between Lou Salomé, Nietzsche, and Paul Rée (in all constellations) is addressed as a contact as is Descartes’ theorem, which allows three kissing or mutually tangent circles to construct a fourth tangent circle.

The, perhaps, most simple form of contact, to literally touch, is embodied by the sand under the feet of the audience, which covers the entire surface of the exhibition space. Heating lamps warm the skin of the spectators and the ceramic objects distributed in the sand appear to be like shells on the beach, which are to be discovered and unearthed. Next to an explicit drawing of sexual penetration, plastic chairs are stacked into a tower.

Performing on or using the exhibited objects, Müller has 15 actors present musical and performative actions on the evening before the opening, entitled “Erste kleine Probe für Nietzsches Geburtstagsparty 2313”. Through the contact, the pieces are integrated into a context, which will remain even after the performance has taken place, and thus obtain a narrative charge. Contact so becomes equally a transformation, in which art objects turn to quasi objects of use and puts into question the hierarchy of things or even goes so far as to rearrange it.

The idea, which is played out in the rehearsal of the actors, to celebrate the 70th jubilee of the Habsburg Emperor Franz Joseph with a Nietzsche-year, came from Clarisse, a character from Robert Musil’s novel, The Man Without Qualities, which continuously serves Michael Müller as a point of reference throughout his exhibition cycle. The celebration, which is rejected in the novel, due to its absurdity, is now displaced by Müller into the year 2313 and thus continues Musil’s “conscious utopianism”, which comes to effect in various forms throughout the novel.

It involves sensemaking through aestheticization to optimize the freedom to think up alternatives to religion and worship of the body. Contact points are not only included in every work, whether mathematically, spiritually or physically addressed, but linked equally throughout the exhibition and as part of the whole with the cycle.

Michael Müller, born 1970 in Ingelheim on the Rhine, lives and works in Berlin. He studied sculpting and fine arts at the Kunstakademie in Düsseldorf with Magdalena Jetelová. Alongside numerous gallery exhibitions, Müller has participated in many institutional group exhibitions in the past ten years in Germany and elsewhere, for instance at the Kunsthaus Dresden (2012) and at the Kunst- und Ausstellungshalle der Bundesrepublik in Bonn (2013). In 2014 his work, among others, was presented in the Des Moines Art Center in Iowa and the Winzavod Center for Contemporary Art in Moscow. Currently, he is participating in the goup show “Fire and Forget. On Violence” at KW Institute of Contemporary Art in Berlin (until August 30th, 2015).