November 22, 2016–January 14, 2017
Sprüth Magers is pleased to announce Kaari Upson’s first solo exhibition with the gallery and her first in Germany. Upson’s practice is rooted in the question of contamination, unearthing the space between the self and the other, the indeterminable zone of 'both'. By investigating the domestic environment, Upson presents the wealth of emotional material that a familiar object or space can contain, exude, and expel; we leak all over our things, and they, in turn, leak their thingness back onto us. The intimate and mundane objects of the American household become bodily, uncanny, and multiple.
In the exhibition MMDP Upson again collapses the dichotomy between inside/outside, offering a Barthesian 'third term'. By dividing the gallery into two twinned octagonal spaces, Upson offers the viewer two split viewing experiences. Upon entering the body is surrounded by a quartet of videos through the space. Each video is different but together they constitute a singular portrait: examining the inner life and outer experience of an unnamed blonde, who wanders the aisles of Costco, a new type of flâneur. Costco is presented as a formal landscape, a pastoral and emotional scene, cluttered with the 'bulk' of the American dream. In another video, the same blonde is seen in an idyllic forest, mid-ritual, sloshing around in a river, pulling a tarp over the ghostly floating bodies of other outcasts, setting fire to plastic towers. This setting is like Costco folded inside out, but the same figure moves through it with the same spectral determination. The psychic waste of our character pollutes both environments; neither is free, but both have hope.