Last Chance to See: Silvia Bächli and Eric Hattan: What about Sunday? at MK Gallery

By Emily Beeson | 22 March 2013

Exhibition preview: Silvia Bächli and Eric Hattan: What about Sunday?, MK Gallery, Milton Keynes, until March 31 2013

A photo of a black and white photo within a black television screen in an art gallery
© Photo: Andy Keate
The first UK exhibition by Swiss contemporary artists Silvia Bächli and Eric Hattan is comprised of a rich mix of media, including video installation, drawing and sculpture. The display suggests multiple parallels between the artists, despite their divergent approaches to performance and visual art.

Exploring notions of ephemerality, the ethereal and alluding to organic forms without fixing on recognisable figures, Silvia Bächli’s pieces are primarily experimental watercolour paintings or drawings which extort the changeable nature of light, density and shade.

The exhibition includes around 100 of Bächli’s never before seen works, created during a 25-year period. Often presented as an assemblage of pieces, her work utilises walls and items of furniture, transforming clusters of figurative drawings into installations.

Correspondingly, Hattan’s performances, videos and installations appropriate and are formed by his surroundings. By manipulating everyday items, Hattan extracts elements of the sublime and comic from the commonplace. These breaches and disruptions challenge the comfort of convention.

The exhibition also features collaborative works such as collages consisting of rejected drawings by Bächli and Hattan’s unwanted photographs. The improbable union of the two styles induces a peculiar, comic atmosphere.

By representing both artists with a single show, the exhibition makes the act of seeing its chief concern and identifies the contrasts between creative, individual and mass vision, while touching on themes of reinvention, perspectival distortions, the laws of physics, and optical illusion.

The show also features a collection of short texts by writers selected by Bächli and Hattan in a publication designed by Astrid Seme and published by Mark Pezinger Verlag.

These texts respond to a series of photographs taken by the artists during their research visits to Milton Keynes. The writers include Chris Fite-Wassilik and Richard Wentworth.

Additionally, a permanent public art work by Hattan has been commissioned by the Gallery in co-operation with The Parks Trust, Milton Keynes. The work will be located in Campbell Park, Milton Keynes, close to MK Gallery.

  • Open 12pm-8pm (11am-8pm Saturday, 11am-5pm Sunday, closed Monday). Admission free. Follow the gallery on Twitter @MK_Gallery.

More pictures:

A photo of various small projectors beaming ethereal images onto an art gallery wall
© Photo: Andy Keate
A photo of various small objects on a two-legged table within a white-walled art gallery
© Photo: Andy Keate
A photo of a small white table with various small objects on it within a white-walled gallery
© Photo: Andy Keate
A photo of a small television underneath a series of pine trees inside an art gallery
© Photo: Andy Keate
A photo of a long metal pole protruding across the top balcony of an art gallery interior
© Photo: Andy Keate
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