NEW/NOW: Katja Loher: How can we cool down the gilded sunbeams?

June 6, 2015–November 1, 2015

Katja Loher, Portal VI (Ideology/Hope), 2014, Self-contained video-sculpture; acrylic hemisphere, video screen embedded in wooden, white finished case, New Britain Museum of American Art

NEW/NOW artist Katja Loher is regarded as a leader amongst the next generality of video artists, exploring and questioning the consequences of living in a globalized world.

Through her wall-mounted video portals and hand-blown glass bubbles, the viewer enters a parallel universe in which Loher displays costumed dancers in choreographed routines filmed by the artist herself. As the New Britain Museum of American Art continues to delve into the realm of New Media, encouraging the discussion between art and technology, we are thrilled to exhibit NEW/NOW: Katja Loher: How can we cool down the gilded sunbeams? this spring.

The glass video sculptures promote discussions amongst viewers, particularly regarding Loher’s environmental themes. Loher states, ”the intimate experience nevertheless resonates globally, addressing ecological urgencies like the disappearance of the 
bee population.”

In 2014, the NBMAA purchased Loher’s Portal VI (Ideology/Hope), one of the artist’s Videoportals that plays two different videos simultaneously, giving the viewer a feel of looking into a kaleidoscope as the colors move and change. Within the video, dancers move with the music; asking questions in order to promote the audience to think. Come experience Loher’s video sculpture currently on view in the Contemporary Gallery in anticipation of her not-to-be missed exhibition.

Katja Loher

Katja Loher is a versatile young Swiss artist living in New York, who is also presently (until 26th September) exhibiting her new work Collapsocope in the prestigious XII International Architecture Exhibition. Looking at her works, transdisciplinary and intermediate, one can appreciate the utopian visions of early 20th century avant-garde artists, in her attempt to fragment and reassemble a grammar that is at the heart of her work. There is likewise a taste for mixing culture, overlapping media and skills, combining sculpture, video, installations, dance, architecture and alluding to the difficult and increasingly urgent relationship between Art and Science.

Katja Loher conducts a rigorous, almost obsessive, investigation which passes from the projection of videos on spherical surfaces — often suspended — with a reference to the organ of vision, the eye, but also to the form of planets. Videoplanets (the expression is the artist’s) simultanously pinpoints visions of simple and complex organisms, constructed thus that it is able to give us, with amazing proportion, extremely multi-faceted and powerful images about the nature of the world.

With the omniscient eye of the scientific observer, seen from a bird’s eye, Katja Loher plays with many aspects of human identity and the relationship between the individual and the community.

Its multitude of performers, choreographed in essential and serial movements, push the body to the limits of human capability, finding the abstract and geometric forms typical of the molecular vision. The individual melts in the community, resulting in unexpected and powerful evocative images. It is a provocation of the limits between art and science, which finds its strongest common denominator in the mediated and non-figurative vision.