On view in Vienna

UPPERS AND DOWNERS | Sofia HULTÉN & Thilo JENSSEN | Christine König Gallery

Published on
October 25, 2022
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Christine König Galerie presents UPPERS AND DOWNERS by Sofia HULTÉN & Thilo JENSSEN on view in Vienna till the 26 Nov 2022.

UPPERS AND DOWNERS is a unique antidote to all the limitations of everyday life


Where does space begin and where does it end? How do we distinguish between everyday events and an emergency, or between product and production?

Exhibition view Sofia HULTÉN & Thilo JENSSEN | UPPERS AND DOWNERS | Christine König Galerie, Vienna 2022 | Photo: kunst-dokumentation.com / Manuel Carreon Lopez
Exhibition view Sofia HULTÉN & Thilo JENSSEN | UPPERS AND DOWNERS | Christine König Galerie, Vienna 2022 | Photo: kunst-dokumentation.com / Manuel Carreon Lopez

The works of Thilo Jenssen (*1984 in Daun, lives and works in Vienna) and Sofia Hultén (*1972 in Stockholm, lives and works in Berlin) make such boundaries clear while also showing alternatives.

Each takes a different approach to engaging with a similar concept by making series featuring the modification of found materials.

l: SOFIA HULTÉN | Manly Rainy Moany #3, 2021 | Found jeans, street posts, steel grilles, fans, wood | 220 x 103 x 103 cm | r: SOFIA HULTÉN | Undead, undead #8, 2021 | Polished used excavator teeth | Courtesy Christine König Galerie, Vienna and the artist | Photo: kunst-dokumentation.com / Manuel Carreon Lopez
SOFIA HULTÉN | Undead, undead #8, 2021 | Polished used excavator teeth | Courtesy Christine König Galerie, Vienna and the artist | Photo: Nick Ash

Sofia Hultén transfers outdoor objects indoors.

So, having been reworked and polished, bulldozer's teeth are freed of any of the aesthetics associated with construction sites and almost defy recognition when mounted on the walls of the gallery.

They are no longer instruments in a line of production they are icons for a design process of their own.

They almost yield tangible glimpses of their past purpose while rejecting this very notion as they do so - perhaps also holding space for everyday random events. 

contemporary art daily-on view-vienna
THILO JENSSEN | Lock Screen, 2022 | UV-print, lacquer and clear coat on canvas on wood | 80 x 60 cm | Courtesy Christine König Galerie, Vienna and the artist | Photo: kunst-dokumentation.com / Manuel Carreon Lopez
contemporary art daily, munchies art club
SOFIA HULTÉN | Super Call Me Fragile Ego #1, 2021 | Mud gully, black glass | 45 x 35 x 20 cm | Courtesy Christine König Galerie, Vienna and the artist | Photo: kunst-dokumentation.com / Manuel Carreon Lopez

The artist's approach frequently consists of the appropriation of generally familiar utility objects, and creating polymorphous visual objects by making minor but essential alterations to them.

For instance, Super Call Me Fragile Ego, a series of clay sculptures comprised of sections of piping. Dark plexiglas gives the impression that they are filled with liquid.

art on view, vienna, contemporary, christine könig
Exhibition view Sofia HULTÉN & Thilo JENSSEN | UPPERS AND DOWNERS | Christine König Galerie, Vienna 2022 | Photo: kunst-dokumentation.com / Manuel Carreon Lopez
thilo jenssen, christine könig, art
THILO JENSSEN | Single Module – Orange (Blechpainting) | Single Module – Green (Blechpainting), 2022 | Car paint on metal, metal frame | 80 x 100 cm each | Courtesy Christine König Galerie, Vienna and the artist | Photo: kunst-dokumentation.com / Manuel Carreon Lopez

What is real, what is illusion? Both seem plausible. For our reality could just as easily be completely different: Every action and every event is based on innumerable variables.

Who defines forms and structures? Couldn't every moment, every object take on a completely different shape? Hultén sums up this inconceivable infinity of possibilities in her works.

installation view, upper downers, könig
Exhibition view Sofia HULTÉN & Thilo JENSSEN | UPPERS AND DOWNERS | Christine König Galerie, Vienna 2022 | Photo: kunst-dokumentation.com / Manuel Carreon Lopez
thilo jenssen, contemporary art, on view
THILO JENSSEN | Alarm #2, 2022 | UV-print, lacquer and clear coat on canvas on wood | 70 x 50 cm | Courtesy Christine König Galerie, Vienna and the artist | Photo: kunst-dokumentation.com / Manuel Carreon Lopez

The relationship between subject and object, which for the longest time was based on the presumption of stable relations, is no exception.

In practical and ontological terms, the relationship was previously arranged into two spheres: People are people, and things are things. The upshot: people use things.

sofia hulten, thilo jenssen, uppers downers
l: SOFIA HULTÉN | Moany Moany Moany #1, 2022 | Found jeans, street posts, steel grilles, fans, wood | 150 x 103 x 103 cm | r: THILO JENSSEN | Single Module – Yellow (Blechpainting) | Single Module – Black Mouth Pink Shirt, 2022 | Car paint on metal, metal frame | UV-print on metal, metal frame | 80 x 100 cm each | Courtesy Christine König Galerie, Vienna and the artists | Photo: kunst-dokumentation.com / Manuel Carreon Lopez
sculptural installation, contemporary art, now
SOFIA HULTÉN | Moany Moany Moany #1, 2022 | Found jeans, street posts, steel grilles, fans, wood | 150 x 103 x 103 cm | Courtesy Christine König Galerie, Vienna and the artist | Photo: kunst-dokumentation.com / Manuel Carreon Lopez

While a pair of trousers that dances around a street bollard as if by itself reinforces the probability of an inverted hierarchy of power: Surely man is more dependent on his things than the other way around?

Thilo Jenssen's Screenshot Paintings are manifestations of sequences of digital aids for the body.

christine könig, vienna, art gallery, top, prominent
Exhibition view Sofia HULTÉN & Thilo JENSSEN | UPPERS AND DOWNERS | Christine König Galerie, Vienna 2022 | Photo: kunst-dokumentation.com / Manuel Carreon Lopez
thilo jenssen, sculpture, wall art
THILO JENSSEN | Alarm, 2022 | UV-print, lacquer and clear coat on canvas | 52 x 30 cm | Courtesy Christine König Galerie, Vienna and the artist | Photo: kunst-dokumentation.com / Manuel Carreon Lopez

Automated emergency calls, repetitive alarms and idyllic lock screens are applied to the canvas by means of UV printing, only to dissolve again through abrasion in a dialogue between dystopia and utopia.

thilo jenssen, christine könig, exhibition
THILO JENSSEN | Single Modules – Blue, Grey, Light Blue, Yellow (Blechpainting) | Single Module – Wrap, 2022 | Car paint on metal, metal frame | UV-Print on metal, metal frame | 80 x 100 cm each | Courtesy Christine König Galerie, Vienna and the artist | Photo: kunst-dokumentation.com / Manuel Carreon Lopez
wall art, on view, art show, vienna
THILO JENSSEN | Single Module – Yellow (Blechpainting) | Cut, 2022 | Car paint on metal, metal frame | UV-Print on metal, metal frame 80 x 100 | 80 x 60 cm | Courtesy Christine König Galerie, Vienna and the artist | Photo: kunst-dokumentation.com / Manuel Carreon Lopez 

Jenssen's tin paintings challenge similar regulatory structures for intersubjective systems of power and support. 

Alongside monochrome surfaces, they show theatrically staged situations between safety and control; the depictions come from the artist's archive of first aid instructions, compiled over years. 

daily contemporary, art, on view, online art magazine
Exhibition view Sofia HULTÉN & Thilo JENSSEN | UPPERS AND DOWNERS | Christine König Galerie, Vienna 2022 | Photo: kunst-dokumentation.com / Manuel Carreon Lopez

The distance between the dramaturgy of the image and the reality of the subject depicted alludes to an awareness of the fragility and dependence of the human body. 

This is contrasted by the physical brutality of the ground to the image: monochrome lacquer, contoured and rendered rhythmic by traces of sweat strongly suggests references to Colour Field Painting and Minimal Art.

teresa kamencek, christine könig, vienna, austria
Exhibition view Sofia HULTÉN & Thilo JENSSEN | UPPERS AND DOWNERS, Christine König Galerie, Vienna 2022 | Photo: kunst-dokumentation.com / Manuel Carreon Lopez

Yet the paintings, which make their raw materials and the processuality of the mechanisms of their production obvious, transgressing their medial boundaries and revealing not only their photographic quality but also a sculptural quality.

How meaningful are categories anymore? With this in the background, the exhibition UPPERS AND DOWNERS is a unique antidote to all the limitations of everyday life. - Teresa Kamencek, 2022

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Sofia HULTÉN & Thilo JENSSEN | UPPERS AND DOWNERS

Christine König Galerie

Schleifmühlgasse 1a, 1040 Vienna

On view till the 26 Nov 2022

Tuesday to Friday 11 am - 6 pm & Saturday 11 am - 4 pm 

Images and press text courtesy the Christine König Gallery and written by Teresa Kamencek

Photos: kunst-dokumentation.com / Manuel Carreon Lopez

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