Christian Theiß | Taking Measurements

Press release

January 21 until February 25, 2017


The circle is a symbol of infinity and harmony. The form has neither an end nor a beginning. Back in the bronze Age and in old China the circle was a symbol for the cosmos (a round disc with a hole in the middle). It is also associated with terms such as circle of life, production cycle, earth or universe. Furthermore, Goethe used the color circle to show the harmony between colors and Leonardo Da Vinci showed the perfection of the human body with it.

Christian Theiß’ second solo exhibition ›Taking Measurements‹ only concerns itself indirectly with the form of the circle. The exhibition title refers to the work of a seamstress, namely measuring proportions for pattern making. At a first glance measuring objects seems simple. However, applying measurements to the human cosmos or even to the universe indicate the obstacles of this undertaking.

A body (either human or materialistic) stands not only in relation to the beholder but additionally to the room itself. Never the less, objects are only understood through the perception of the interpreter. Whereby form, texture and relation to the room become subject: flat works seem different compared to free hanging objects or stagnant sculptures. How does their effect change with the various confrontations?

On entering the beholder is welcomed by an object made of two over-crossing, proliferating circles within a larger circle. Because the flat disk can be viewed from all sides, the perception changes depending on whether it takes in the room or nearly disappears in it. The work hangs opposed to a photogram, which shows cutouts of the circle. The works do not only contrast each other in form, but also in their manner of taking in the room.

By means of a yardstick Theiß hints at the action of “measuring” itself, whereas the photogram ›Inside the Clock‹ can be associated with measuring time (clock mechanism) or a production cycle.

The contrast between the earthly and cosmic comes to the foreground in the back gallery. A circle made of train tracks symbolizes the earthly progress (industrialization). The perception from its other side shines with its referral to religious art. In the last room, two spheres hinder the beholder’s entrance. They hang from the ceiling and are connected through a chain while they seem to float within the room as though in the universe. The relatedness to the room, constituted of “heavy” material and form, is thereby evenly as dominant as the contrast between the earthly and cosmic.


Ariane Löckmann