Hannes Bend, “Reef,” 2012. Photo courtesy of Charest-Weinberg.
reading through the first issue of the miami rail, i find this review of hannes bend's ECLIPSE, a solo show @ charest weinberg, by alpesh patel. let's start with this:
His installation is less an allegory of the perils of man's encroachment on nature, though, than an embodied depiction of man as always already part of a sublime, or simultaneously terrific and terrifying, nature. The show is not unlike the landscape paintings of Caspar David Friedrich, who incidentally found inspiration in the area along the Baltic Sea and around Neustadt in the Holstein region of Germany, where Bend grew up.i wished patel would have explained why he finds caspar friedrich's romantic landscape paintings akin to bend's installation (after all this is an important claim for his review). am i to assume that growing up in the same place where friedrich "incidentally found inspiration" is enough? is it that they're both german? is it geography?
it seems so. check patel's next analogy: "Friedrich’s contemporary Immanuel Kant writes..." um, both contemporary and german (one begins to sense of heimat).
this is real galimatias:
Friedrich’s contemporary Immanuel Kant writes the sublime “may be compared with vibration, i.e., with a rapidly alternating repulsion and attraction by one and the same object.” Three of the gallery’s walls feature projections that collectively engender this kind of vibratory sublime affect.kant's "sublime" is literally reduced to a "vibration" (?) to buttress bend's projections on charest-weinberg's gallery walls, (which counts for patel's third analogy thus far. what's this obsession with "sublime" these days?)
even kant's notorious phlegm would melt with patel's vibratory analogies, as in: ["this kind of vibratory sublime affect"]. what the hell?
by now you realize that patel is no friend of subtle thinking. the next statement takes analogizing* to new levels:
Kant’s theorization of the sublime is ultimately resolved by the stabilization of the aforementioned “vibration” as “restful contemplation;” and ultimately the dominance of reason (the “supersensible”) over the “sensible.”"ultimately resolved"? indeed. once and for all, the difficult hurdles of kantian sublime are put to rest (& under 500 words!)
care for one last double dutch?
Kant refers to the supersensible as disembodied rationality, whereas sensibility is often conflated with affect and tantamount to irrationality. Bend’s work is deeply synaesthetic and thereby attempts to keep the subject in the world rather than coolly against it.________________________
* analogy is a cognitive process relating two or more things. but as such, it's kind of problematic, since one can always relate any "a" with just any "b." as the greatest kantian comedian, groucho marx, used to say: "anything resembles anything else." serious question: what does obama's left hand has in common with the eiffel tower?