Exhibitions

The Bronze House

Plamen Dejanoff

June 18, 2011 - January 15, 2012

Plamen Dejanoff, The Bronze House, (144 Facade Elements), 2006 - 2011, Foto / photo: Fred Dott / Kunstverein Hamburg, 2011
Plamen Dejanoff, The Bronze House, (144 Facade Elements), 2006 - 2011, Foto / photo: Fred Dott / Kunstverein Hamburg, 2011 Plamen Dejanoff, The Bronze House, (144 Facade Elements), 2006 - 2011, Foto / photo: Fred Dott / Kunstverein Hamburg, 2011 Plamen Dejanoff, The Bronze House, (144 Facade Elements), 2006 - 2011, Foto / photo: Fred Dott / Kunstverein Hamburg, 2011

From 18 June 2011, the Bulgarian artist Plamen Dejanoff (* 1970 in Sofia, lives in Vienna) will be realising the bronze sculpture "The Bronze House" in public space in the HafenCity Hamburg. The outside façade of the architectural design is composed of caste bronze modules measuring 95 x 65 x 10 cm. In Hamburg the artist is showing some 150 elements that compose an open pavilion with an area of 40 qm and appr. 4 m height.

For many years, Dejanoff has been planning and developing "The Bronze House" for the Bulgarian city Veliko Tarnovo. In the city centre, Dejanoff has acquired a number of building sites on which he is erecting house sculptures of bronze. They are being arduously constructed by hand in separate elements, so that since 2006 progress on the first of five planned building sculptures, which will in total cover 600 square metres, has been advancing in various stages of production and in cooperation with various exhibition venues.

Ultimately, Dejanoff envisages an artists' colony like the Chinati Foundation initiated by Donald Judd in Marfa. In Veliko Tarnovo Dejanoff has similarly chosen a city that, although of great regional and historical importance as a World Heritage Site, has little to offer in the way of contemporary art and culture.  Dejanoff wants to set up his colony here of bronze houses/sculptures, which are intended to play an important role for the community in various functions and uses, e.g., as artists' studios or exhibition venues, open-air cinema and library. With the five planned "Bronze Houses," Dejanoff will be creating a special domain in Veliko Tarnovo for societal, artistic, and cultural activities, which, given the lack of infrastructure in the past, are likely to be unaccustomed.

The creation of the bronze sculptures is not the only challenge: another will be the possibility and invitation to make accessible and usable platforms of them. Dejanoff is now launching a first field experiment with the Kunstverein in the context of the initiative "Art and Culture in the HafenCity." "The Bronze House" will be making a stopover prior to and in parallel with his exhibition in the Kunstverein Hamburg (October 1, 2011 - January 1, 2012).

"The Bronze House"—erected on the site between the Hamburg Cruise Center and the Unilever Building—will hence be a new, temporary building. The walk-in sculpture will be both a satellite of the future house in Veliko Tarnovo and a satellite of the Kunstverein. The (still) empty envelope points to the function of architecture, but also to a relationship between inside and outside, to space and its use.

However, it will not only refer to Dejanoff's project in Bulgaria but also provide a frame for the Kunstverein for targeted, smaller projects and events, and thus serve here, too, as a platform for cultural activities. On a sort of marketing tour, "The Bronze House" is a highly impressive sight that leaves open certain questions, for example about ideological spaces, who will occupy them, for what purpose, and to whose benefit. An answer can presumable be given only when complete project has been realised and come into its own in Veliko Tarnovo.

"The Bronze House" is funded by the iniative "Art and Culture in the HafenCity", a cooperation of Hamburgische Kulturstiftung, Körber Stiftung and HafenCity Hamburg.