Katalog zur Ausstellung im Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt, 25.03. bis 09.08.2006
The catalog shows details and working sketches of the work group Klause of the artist Thomas Demand, which was presented in the MMK Museum of Modern Art.
mit Text-Beiträgen von Dietmar Dath, Christian Demand, Joaachim Valentin
Taking the underlying idea of Beckman’s cycle as his point of departure, Demand’s work refers to a very recent crime in a German village that attained vast attention in the media. Due to the character of the crime no images of the persons involved could be published, and thus the site of it, a tavern, became a surrogate image that was widely disseminated by the media. This building serves as a starting point for Demand’s constructed images: two outdoor views depict the façade, partly covered by ivy, and the barricaded entrance. Inside one is faced with certain details like a dried-out plant or a coffee machine. Some of the photographs are directly linked to one another: upon entering the kitchen one discovers the door leading to the yellow storage room, that forms the setting of another image. In fact the place would remain harmless and trivial, if it had not been repeatedly presented in the press alongside the facts of the crime gradually revealed in detail as the case unfolded. Over a certain course of time these images — and the occurrence related to them — became a strong, even if shadowy, existence in our collective memory.
Demand’s interest is not centred on the complicated investigation of the case but on the meaning that the photo coverage in the press conveys of the specific location, as well as the chain of virtual images triggered by the press photos. The use of press photos as a point of departure is known from Demand’s previous work, and he reflects some of the most fundamental and disturbing premises of how the media operates. Through his representations he points at society’s extensive demand on sensational stories, and the media’s willingness and capability to exploit such paralyzing events.