SOME/ART : PROCESS! EPISODE ONE: AMBROTYPES AT SAMSA G. TUCHWAREN
Located in the western outskirts of Munich, Hamid Bagherzadeh and Liu Zheng have reticently transformed part of a former factory complex into an exceptional gallery space, named Samsa G. Tuchwaren, inspired by Kafka’s „The Metamorphosis“. While the interior has mostly been left in its distinctive shape of the industrial early 20th century, the facility yet contains a powerful, contemporary quality which adds to its timeless and brutal aesthetic. Masterly blended into this uncompromising environment, Samsa G. Tuchwaren revealed itself to a public audience with their inaugural exhibition „Process! Episode One: Ambrotypes“, a collaboration between STEFAN MILEV (Stuttgart), STEFAN SAPPERT (Wien) and NINI GOLLONG (Paris).
Spanning a total number of 7 ambrotype photographs, „Process!“ is the incarnate witness to an extensive and consistent examination of 7 carefully selected garments by Carol Christian Poell. Arranged and staged by set designer Nini Gollong in a dramatic interplay of shadows and lights, the objects have been caught with pho- tochemical expertise by photographers Stefan Milev & Stefan Sappert. After catching an overall glimpse of the exhibition the visitor gets the chance to step into an original 1920’s decompression chamber to watch a short documentary about the process, visually informing about each ambrotype production step. The unconventional and one-of-a-kind format of 800 x 600 mm has been realized by the use of a custom built large format camera. Specifically blackened glass increases the depth and contrasts of each warm-toned unique specimen as ambrotypes unlike common film processes are non-reproducible. As a refinement, the ambrotypes have been finished with lavender oil to add a characteristic surface texture. Due to the process, each one of the 7 finished art objects slightly differs in their outcome which is considered to do justice to their singularity and adapts to the ethos of Poell’s work. In order to encase the visitor atmospherically, the exhibition is accompanied by a light installation by Ralf Arndt as well as soundscapes by Sebastian Galante, one for each individual am- brotype. In addition, the camera’s cartridge has been sunk into a block of black rubber by Carol Christian Poell himself as a contribution to the gallery and is displayed along with the custom camera used in the process.