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Praha-Berlin Barter

In March/April 2019, Urban Spree Galerie invites Prague-based Trafo Gallery for a group show and gallery exchange.

„Praha-Berlin Barter“ will take place from 28.03.2019 to 21.04.2019 and will display the works of 8 prominent Czech artists from the Trafo gallery.

Curated by Trafo Gallery Director Blanka Čermáková, the group show oscillates between contemporary urban arts (Jan Kaláb, Michal Škapa), pop surrealism (Jan Vytiska), contemporary drawing, sculpture, digital art, animation (Jakub Janovský, Michal Cimala, Jakub Nepraš), and geometric abstraction paintings (Robert Šalanda, Ira Svobodová). All artists have been involved in the old Trafacka space in Prague before its destruction and are actively involved into the new Trafo Gallery.

This group exhibition marks the first exchange between 2 independent European galleries sharing the same values and a similar history.

Trafacka was created in 2006 as a gallery and residential space located in an old power station in an industrial district of Prague.
After a couple of years, the place was occupied by more than 100 living and working artists in 36 studios, exhibiting in Trafo Gallery. More than 200 projects took place over the course of 8 years, until the place was finally destroyed in 2014. In 2016, the gallery managed to relocate in a former slaughterhouse (Vietnamese market of Prague, across the river from the historical center). Trafo Gallery was reborn with a 200 sqm gallery space and 4 artist studios. The artist-run gallery presents six exhibitions and six books per year with a focus on the new contemporary Czech art scene and the genres of street art, sculptures, abstraction painting, and digital art.

In the words of Blanka Čermáková, Director of Trafo Gallery: „One exhibition per year is a sort of barter with international projects and galleries which this year leads us to Berlin, city of art, angels and friends. Eight artists based in Prague, united with a long term bond to Trafo Gallery and our history, – Ira Svobodová, Jan Kaláb, Jakub Nepraš, Michal Cimala, Michal Škapa, Jan Vytiska, Robert Šalanda and Jakub Janovský – represent strong personalities and different art expressions. Ira Svobodová paints exact architectural compositions and builds perspective with colors and shadows, Jan Kaláb, a well known artist to Urban Spree with strong street art roots and perfect color and shapes styles, Jakub Nepraš shape sculptures as a platform for his vivid videocollages of microscopic worlds of nature and human babylons, Michal Cimala composes sculptures made often from collected material to existentialist compositions. Graffiti legend Michal Škapa works with urban scenery, apocalyptic and architecture destruction or using expressive colors when writing his crypted rune texts on canvases. Jan Vytiska is a painter of zombie romantic and surrealistic stories often based in forest neighbourhood or in postapocalyptic times. Robert Šalanda works with paper collages of abstract color shapes and transpose it to canvases where playfully upgrades new compositions with gradient colors. Last but not least Jakub Janovský is recognizable with his figurative drawings and often black and white coloring, silicon, enamel or airbrush outlines and ironic reflecting of society problems and characters.

All of these artists, whether picturing abstract motives, displaying the view of their world around or in their visions, are the subatomic particles bonding Trafo Gallery fluidum together. Without them, Trafo Gallery would never exist“.

In June 2019, Urban Spree’s artists will be hosted in Prague by Trafo Gallery.

 

Praha-Berlin Barter

Urban Spree Galerie

Opening: Thursday, 28.03.2019 from 19:00

Exhibition: 29.03.2019 – 21.04.2019

Tu-Su: 12:00-19:00

Revaler Str. 99

10245 Berlin

Info & Catalogue: galerie@urbanspree.com



Jim Avignon: Here Comes the Bad News

Jim Avignon returns to Urban Spree Galerie for his second solo show „Here Comes the Bad News“, 2 years after « Permanent Jetlag ».

In his only exhibition in Berlin for the year 2019, Jim Avignon describes the mood in the world and in Berlin in particular with his usual wit.

Gentrification, Global Warming, Surveillance Capitalism, Alt Right… here comes indeed the bad news. His paintings are a mash-up of cartoony figuration, expressionistic composition, – a maximum of expression with a minimum of lines.

 

Jim Avignon is a painter, illustrator and conceptual artist. Always ready to confront the establishment he is torn between pop art, street art, Picasso on acid or simply being the fastest painter in the world. His signature style consists of vivid colours, a biting humor, unpretentious materials and a mind numbing output. His art works like pop music in DIY mode.

According to the legend, the artist became stranded in the Provence city of Avignon at some point in the ’80s when his car unexpectedly broke down. He resorted to painting Dali images onto pavements, gradually raising money to repair his car. The name stayed.

In the early 90s, he became an ubiquitous painter of the techno movement, designing makeshift clubs and Love Parade trucks.

By creating a colorful flood of affordable, rapidly-produced works, Jim disrupts the well-oiled art market and pervades it with black humor and self-irony. Avignon’s images caricature the modus operandi of the art market and are also aimed at people who are bored or deterred by the gold-framed aura of so-called high art. „Good Artists Go To The Museum, Bad Artists Go Everywhere“.

 

Jim Avignon

„Here Comes the Bad News“

Solo Show at Urban Spree Galerie

Vernissage: Friday, August 09th, 2019

Exhibition: 09.08.2019 – 08.09.2019

Urban Spree Galerie

Revaler Str. 99

10245 Berlin

Info and catalogue: pascal@urbanspree.com



Jim Avignon: „Business as Unusual“ Book Release + Concert

4 months after his solo show „Permanent Jetlag„, Jim Avignon returns to Urban Spree Galerie for the special launch of „Business as Unusual, the most complete monograph of the German artist to date, spanning 30 years of an unacademic career in 400+ illustrations.

 

Jim will sign his book and perform unplugged as Neoangin together with Jens Friebe on the grand piano.
 
Doors 18:00
Concert 19:00
Free Entry

 

The painter, illustrator and conceptual artist Jim Avignon is one of the most unconventional characters in the current German art world. Vibrant colours and unpretentious materials, a good dose of wit and an enormous output are his trademarks. For the first time an opulent monograph allows a comprehensive insight into the complex oeuvre of the artist, who has always sought confrontation with the establishment and who could never decide whether he wanted to be pop-art, street-art, Picasso on acid or whether he was simply the fastest painter in the world.
Avignon’s narrative about „things not going as planned“ is full of concise quips and not without a certain delight. He expounds his peculiar relationship with the art market and describes the exhibitions that finally put him on the map as an exceptional artist. We get to read about odd detours into the world of commerce, a stolen bear, paintings that need ironing, call-for-help socks and how a mural almost landed him in jail. Avignon spills the beans about the high and lows of one of the strangest careers the art world has seen in the last 25 years—expect a lot of detail, an ironic undertone and an abundance of images.
 
„Business as Unusual“ is a hardcover, 160 pages, 400 illustrations book published by the local imprint The Green Box with texts written by ATAK, Sandra Prill, and Lars Willumeit.