Sven Johne has approached the fateful relationship of the individual to social distortions and economic development in his image-text-cycles and video pieces, in which he always conflates personal stories with actual history, precise observation and pointedly invention.
How do identities and life-concepts change and modify under these circumstances and how free is a person to decide upon his or her being? Building upon the gesture of collecting and reproduction and trusting in fictional-atmospheric elements Johne opens the stage for fates and absurdities of today and frames them in a concrete and tangible way.
The current exhibition 52 glückliche Orte / 52 happy places gathers works that are revolving around the everlasting quest for the Other, the Better or maybe the Utopian. Can one reach in this “society of efficiency and velocity” (S. Johne) a satisfying life? Is solidarity still topical? And can one still imagine fulfillment and happiness? The exhibition space becomes now a projections space for these questions and opens a cosmos that withdraws from any concrete phrasing.
The narration starts in the viewer’s mind when the last still living lighthouse guards of Germany appear in a line of ancestors at the wall; or when there is no land to discover on the maps of modern seafaring. In one of the exhibited works Sven Johne follows the tracks of an amateur cave explorer, who seeks knowledge in New York’s underground. Furthermore, he has sent seven messages in a bottle to the oceans: they are stories of stagnancy that tell of humans in waiting position or of gestures of refusal.