Hans Hemmert °˖✧◝(⁰▿⁰)◜✧˖°
level (2m groß sein)
Kunsthalle Hamburg, Galerie der Gegenwart, Glockengießerwall 5, 20095 Hamburg
Exhibition: July 18, 10 am – 6 pm
Exhibition opening July 17, 4.30 pm
First shown in a Berlin gallery in 1997, the work level (2 m groß sein) by the artist Hans Hemmert has been produced and recontextualized for Gegenwart: Doing Youth. In the exhibition in the Galerie der Gegenwart of the Hamburger Kunsthalle, each visitor is equipped with a pair of light blue platform shoes. Depending on their respective height, the plateaus of the shoes vary, elevating all visitors to two meters, consequently they all meet each other on eye-level. The notion of 'Youth' is always associated with attributes, expectations, and social norms. Especially in Germany, these are often deficits, such as naivety and a lack of reason – in short, youth is constructed by its differentiation to the adult.
Consequently, the egalitarian element of Hemmert's work will be brought to the foreground. Whereas so-called 'young adults' were previously denied the status of full-fledged subjects, Hemmert's work enables a drastic democratization of status: as soon as the platform shoes are put on, no one is looked down upon. This opens a space in which existing attributes and power relations become evident – and may be problematized in new ways. At the moment that the audience meets on the same level, questions of inclusion and exclusion are negotiated in uncomplicated and immediate ways.