Climate & Design: Thomas Auer, Edith Kollath & Malte Wagenfeld public talk

How do you recreate the external environment of a forest or beach inside an art gallery? Curator Malte Wagenfeld will discuss the challenges of creating the exhibition Dynamics of Air, presented at RMIT Gallery in partnership with the Goethe-Institut.

Join Wagenfeld, German designer Thomas Auer and artist Edith Kollath as they take audiences through the ideas and themes behind the exhibition, which explores the dynamics of the climates in which we all live.

Wagenfeld and Auer will discuss their joint project Outside_In, an experiential environment inspired by the forest and beach, dappled shade and sun, pockets of cool moist air and patches of radiant warmth. The installation seeks to capture such experiences within the gallery allowing visitors to transverse through and languish within different microclimates.

They will discuss the perceptual tricks and challenges of producing such environments and why experiments such as these not only provide a rich dialogue to contemplate the importance of transient bodily experiences and climate, but also how such gallery installations perform an important experimental template for investigating new models for sustainable and passive design strategies in the built environment.

Berlin based artist, Edith Kollath will discuss four works she developed for Dynamics of Air; ‘Nothing Will Ever be the Same’, a delicate almost transparent sheet which gently falls from the ceiling only to be resurrected and then fall again. Like all her pieces in this exhibition, it explores breath, its rhythm and its qualities regarding room and time. In ‘Limits of Breath’, five videos play simultaneously, with five people passing breath to each other, visualised through exploding blown glass bubbles (filmed in ultra-high definition) which are inhaled and exhaled.

‘Wandering Breath’ and ‘Breath Exchanger’ explore the shared medium of air through breath, its intimacy and preciousness. Kollath will invite audience members to exchange breath through a specially built glass instrument that enables air to be shared whilst filtering out all germs, bacteria and viruses; further highlighting the intimacy and anxiety of sharing the invisible yet palpable medium of air with others.

Dynamics of Air (14 Sept – 17 Nov) is a new exhibition curated by Malte Wagenfeld showcasing specially commissioned works by designers, creative practitioners and engineers that captures the beauty, dynamics and sensuality of air in our built environment.


Images: ‘Nothing will ever be the same’ Edith Kollath, 2011. Mixed media installation: textile, electronic mechanism. Dimensions variable. Photos courtesy of the artist.


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Exhibition14 Sep – 17 Nov 2018

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