Art Basel Statements 2018
Jun 14, 2018
Jun 17, 2018
Designer goods and secondhand objects laced with his signature dark humor, the work of Mathis Altmann embodies the consumer-driven social dramas of our hyper-networked urban milieu. Eschewing the fetish of a fine finish, Altmann’s raw vocabulary plays with our hardwired obsession with updates and the resultant hunger for a refined nostalgia.
In Non-Toxic Revolution, Altmann transforms an art-fair booth into an architect’s office presenting a proposal for the revitalization of an un- named urban area. His sculptures coalesce as portraits of the creative design processes that develop and execute the ubiquitous upcycled patina found in start-up offices, artisanal food shops, and ‘curated’ luxury boutiques that dominate the consumer aesthetics of metropolitan epicenters. In Altmann’s work, the rustic paneling of a coffee shop is re-designed into a choppy plinth. The pervasive taste for bespoke vintage crossed with sportswear is lampooned by the pairing of fast fashion and dated tchotchkes.
Loaded with billboards, lights, and reflective surfaces, Altmann’s open plan urban facades invite the viewer to ‚ window shop‘ his inversions, and to consider the knotty ties between the branding of social values and our individual roles as cultural producers and consumers.