press release

I suddenly realised that in the language, or at any rate in the spirit of the Glass Bead Game, everything actually was all-meaningful, that every symbol and combination of symbols led not to single examples, experiments, and proofs, but into the centre, the mystery and innermost heart of the world - into knowledge. Hermann Hesse, The Glass Bead Game

Taking its title from Hermann Hesse's novel, The Glass Bead Game weaves together interrelated fictions that form a landscape of broken connections. Signposting the way are images and objects colluding to form an entropic trail that define a restless territory of creative knowledge.

Hesse's novel, set in the future, tells a narrative of a monastic protagonist who plays a highly aesthetic game. The game integrates all fields of human and cosmic knowledge - sacred geometry, alchemy, hieroglyphics, mythology, harmonics, arithmetic, astronomy and magic. The Glass Bead Game is the artistic, philosophical or cosmological manipulation of the symbolic forms that express these systems of knowledge. Once initiated into this system we can read hieroglyphs, alchemical texts or Gothic cathedrals; The Glass Bead Game is thus a mode of playing with the total contents and values of culture.

The exhibition aims to be a polysemic constellation that evokes and fuses the real with the imaginary: delicate drawings, wax sculptures, botanical collage, esoteric busts, appropriated imagery and found material are manipulated with transformative effect. The artists relish in the degradation of the known and the perversion of a rational culture. Parallel worlds collide in the extrapolation of consumption and exchange that seek to look critically at the present. We encounter blueprints of personal visions that allow us to imagine how the sediments of our culture might otherwise be seen.

Juliette Blightman Steven Claydon Jeff Davis William Daniels Volker Eichelmann Thomas Houseago Sophie Macpherson Adam McEwen Seth Price Stefan Rinck Florian Roithmayr Dirk Stewen John Stezaker

Curated by Alum Rowlands and Matt Williams

Kuratoren: Alum Rowlands, Matt Williams

mit Juliette Blightman, Steven Claydon, Jeff Davis, William Daniels, Volker Eichelmann, Thomas Houseago, Sophie Macpherson, Adam McEwen, Seth Price, Stefan Rinck, Florian Roithmayr, Dirk Stewen, John Stezaker