Karin Sander: The Brutality of Walls
“Any wall is a political statement.”
We met German artist Karin Sander at the opening of the 18th International Architecture Biennale in Venice, where she revitalised the architecture of the Swiss Pavilion by removing a wall. Read more …
“It separates something. Therefore the wall in the world has a huge symbolic value. In this case here, it is so small, but it has a brutality as well.”
Under the title Neighbours, Karin Sander, together with art historian Philip Ursprung, focuses on the spatial and structural proximity between the neighboured Swiss and Venezuelan pavilions – the former built by Bruno Giacometti (1907 – 2012), the latter by Italian Carlo Scarpa (1906 – 1978). By studying the buildings, Sander found out they had a common floor plan as well as many corresponding details that were later divided by a wall built by the Swiss.
“Art and architecture are neighbours too. Art picks up on the questions of society as well, but the translation is a different one. To open up something gives a completely new perspective. This is an intervention an architect would never do. But as artists and art historians, we do exactly what we are asked for: We show the architecture and what it has to tell.”
Karin Sander, born in Bensberg, lives in Berlin and Zurich. In her artistic practice, she questions given situations in relation to their structural, social and historical contexts and makes them visible using a range of media. With sculptures, installations, drawings, films, photographs, and computer-based technologies, she stages places and generates new codes for existing systems. Her works have been presented in solo exhibitions and biennials worldwide and are in public collections in many countries. Since 2007 she has held the chair for Architecture and Art at Eidgenössusche Technische Hochschule (ETH) Zürich, where she initiated and led the research group in 3D Modeling / 3D Printing and in Hybrid Reality. She has received numerous awards, is a member of the Deutscher Künstlerbund and is Director of the Visual Arts Section of the Akademie der Künste, Berlin. With Philip Ursprung (architecture and art historian), Karin Sander represents Switzerland in the Swiss Pavilion at the 18th International Architecture Biennale in Venice 2023.
Karin Sander was interviewed by Marc-Christoph Wagner in May 2023. The interview took place in connection with the opening of the 18th International Architecture Biennale in Venice, Italy.
Camera: Simon Weyhe
Edited by: Jarl Therkelsen Kaldan
Produced by: Marc-Christoph Wagner
Copyright: Louisiana Channel, Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, 2023
Louisiana Channel is supported by Den A.P. Møllerske Støttefond, Ny Carlsbergfondet and C.L. Davids Fond og Samling. This film is supported by Dreyersfond and Fritz Hansen.
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