After The Gift (2016-ongoing) draws from a series of sources – Marcel Mauss' essay The Gift (1925), the tradition of flower arrangements for inaugurations in China, Karl Blossfelt's photography of plants from the early 20th century and woven hand fans collected from all over China. After the Gift creates an intimate and sophisticated interwoven space in which the connections between guest, host, donor and artist are examined and superimposed onto a new set of works in multiple media.
Lo and Behold is a performative installation consisting of a series of colourful woven baskets and a photograph that depicts different types of hued moths gathering on a net against a black background. The photograph is presented on a large table full-size filling and covered by a glass plate. On the glass sit baskets made out of different plastic twines and adorned with simple floral ornaments evoking associations with some kind of anthropological artefacts, vases and cocoons. During the exhibition, a performer occasionally rearranges the baskets on the table and sets them in visual relationship to the moths in the photograph.
Home Sequence (2018-ongoing), initiated and organized by Sascha Pohle and Tao G. Vrhovec Sambolec, is framed by a series of invitations from artist to artist, who either exhibit together in one home or each in their own homes in Amsterdam. As such this expanded group exhibition is imagined to cast an open net that connects a route through the city. Home Sequence is a gesture that addresses the politics of space and representation, inverting the role of the artist as guest in public space to that of host in private space.
German Indian (2005-2010, a mixed media installation reminiscent of an ethnographical museum with redrawings, rephotographs, film and artifacts, deals with a widespread German phenomenon called Hobbyism or Indianism. Following the legacy of the German writer Karl May (1842 -1912) Hobbyism continued to exist in both Germanys (former GDR and West Germany) until today. German Indian deals with appropriations, authenticity and the romantic desire for otherness on the background of Germany's own social history.
Doppelgänger Video Archive consists of all my collected movies over the years, which were relevant to the research about the doppelgänger.
The 60 min video The Swimmer (2004) is an adaptation of the movie with the same title (1968) by Frank Perry starring Burt Lancaster. Set in a new context of tourism Sascha Pohle takes over Lancaster's swimming performance by crossing a series of successive pools. A Thomas Cook travel brochure serves as a script and method of formulating a precise visual route. According to the order of the catalogue Pohle swims one lap, pool by pool, page by page. The video is shot on Tenerife and concludes with the 52nd pool, open- ended, pointing to an infinitive number of places, or nowhere.
In the photo series Attachments (2015) various cloth hangers out of my private collection are combined with a selection of images from the classic book ‘Le Musée Imaginaire de la Sculpture Mondiale’ (1952) by André Malraux.
In the video After Marcel Mauss, The Gift - The Form and Reason for Exchange in Archaic Societies a hand presents b&w photographs of Korean Hwawhan rearrangements and book pages from Mauss’ The Gift (1925) on an overhead projector. The text becomes partly covered by plastic leaves, which appear as deep black on the projection reminiscent of ink paintings.
Ornaments of Property (2013-15) consists of collected DVD/CD computer drives for use as brick stones to build mural fragments reminiscent of the archaeological artifacts one might encounter in a museum or excavation site. Devices for archiving data, already outmoded memory machines, are made over as the units of articulation in a project that addresses the new visibility of historical remainders. Emptied containers, writing devices without a means of operation, address the decay of technology in the context of the modern ruin and the deliquescence of information in the era of hyperbolic speed.
In Studio Index (2012-ongoing) every artist who worked in the Rijksakademie van beeldende Kunsten, Amsterdam, since 1993, has been registered on the building's floor plan. Each artist's name is listed by year and is located in the studio used during the residency.
Noire et Blanche (2011) is an adaptation of Man Ray's photo series with the same title. It deals with the notion of exoticism, otherness and with the human face as a commodity fetish. Noire et Blanche experiments with the definition on otherness that originates from a series about binary opposition. It opposes notions of the primitive and the modern, male and female, Western and non-Western, black and white in an unusual and new setting of gazes. The work was produced in South Korea and raises questions in regard of global exchange and the adoption of Western attributes in mass media and the beauty industry.
If I were you - Las Vegas New York Blackpool (2007) is a video film about the movie 'Taxi Driver' (1976) and three Robert de Niro impersonators who live in three different cities that uncannily relate to each other: Blackpool is a look-alike of Las Vegas, Las Vegas has a casino of a replicated Manhatten skyline and New York has the original film locations of 'Taxi Driver'. The video is a loop; it ends with Blackpool and starts again with Las Vegas. The film remains in a circle of an endless repetition of the copy.
Achille Lauro (2003), through its title, takes up the aspects of safety, collective and individual fear
amongst the longing for pleasure and holidayAchille Lauro a 1985 hijacked luxury cruiser is regarded
as one of the first planned attack on tourists.
The offset prints are photo montages of beach images set against an ocean background.
All images are taken out of travel broschures.
The isolated beach architectures look like floating ships or aircraft carriers at high sea.
Passage (2016-ongoing) are knitted wools with abstract patterns which are based on digital photographs of different asphalt and concrete floors of sites in a city. Passage relates to an imaginary journey through different places and material that can be re-folded and always be arranged differently. Images become translated into soft and mobile terrain.
In Statues Also Die (2012) a 16 mm film, empty cardboard packages of electronic devices are filmed in front of a black background. The film reverses the shift in meaning by presenting the industrial garbage of today’s commodity fetishes as if they were archeological finds or ethnographical artifacts.
The slide installation Crippled Symmetry (2013) is an attempt to approach an archive by reducing it to an abstract form. Archive boxes for 16 mm films discovered on the attic of the Goethe Institute in Amsterdam serve as the material to renegogiate memory and cultural repository.
Revision (2018) took place in Studio A of the photography department at Chung Ang University in Anseong, South Korea. In collaboration with the first semester students, the exhibition reviews student graduation catalogues called Vision from 1979 to 2017 and various paper files from a pre-digital age, which had been stored in shelves that covered two large windows for many years. Revision reverses a dark space into a site-specific exhibition reminiscent of an excavation site, where natural light through windows exposes space and archive again from a current perspective.
In REFRAMING THE ARTIST (2010) painters from Dafen Oil Painting Village, Shenzhen, known as the world's largest producer of hand-painted copies, take over the role of amateur actors by re-enacting artist stereotypes from various European and American fictional artist movies and biopics. Reframing the Artist questions distinct mimetic reationships on the background of the encounter between international conceptual artist and Chinese painter, mass reproduction of oil paintings and the Western canon of art.
THE MAD MASTERS (2007/08) consists of various acts recorded during a celebrity impersonator and look-alike convention in Las Vegas. The protagonists of the video are professionals as well prospective impersonators. The work deals with impersonation as a revenat of popuar culture and opens up questions of power, relationships between celebrity culture, cinema and archaic rituals.
Who are the Mad Masters, the possessed or the impersonated? The title refers to the documentary 'Les Maitre Fous' (1955) by Jean Rouch.
Safety Hour (2003) is a series of three short films edited to loops that depict big overcrowded public pools in Tokyo, which become safety checked and empied every hour. When the pool is completely empty of people, the pool's shape and blue color stand out. The supposedly safe pool, as an alternative to the nearby open sea with all its dangerous weather outbreaks, animals and currents, is addressed in regard to its insecurity. The human crowd, driven by the yearning for fun and recreation requires intricate safety concepts. Humans turn out to be their own danger.