Marco Bohr Floating Cities

16 January - 23 February 2008

Private view
Tuesday 15 January, 6-8 pm

Mummery+ Schnelle is pleased to announce an exhibition of a new body of work by Marco Bohr entitled Floating Cities. In this series of photographs Bohr explores questions concerning nature versus the urban, the artist as outsider, romanticism as an escape from the modern and the ungraspable nature of music, water and time.

The exhibition will feature a series of photographs showing amateur musicians playing on the banks of the Tamagawa river, on the outskirts of Tokyo. In a city as densely populated as the Japanese megapolis, this is one of the few places to practise musical instruments without disturbing others; but the Tamagawa river is also a place frequented for leisure, for courtship, for play, and those who visit this stretch of land are longing to escape the pressures and strictures of the urban environment.

The bridge is a reoccurring symbol in this series of photographs; indeed, its structure might allude to the Proscenium - suggesting that what is taking place is a type of performance. In this case, though, except for the temporary presence of the photographer, the performance has no audience. On the other hand, collaborating in the act of being photographed is also allowing the performance – albeit unintentionally - to prolong itself beyond the moment.

Although the phenomenon of the ‘riverside musician’ developed alongside Japan’s apparent embrace of modernity, it is already rooted in the Japanese psyche: “water is a regressive image symbolizing ... an amniotic fluid, related to the memory of pre-modern Japanese existence.”1 With no high-rises, billboards or bullet trains in sight, the river is possibly also a place where one can visit the past.

Marco Bohr was born in Wiesbaden, Germany in 1978 and studied at Ryerson University, Toronto, Napier University, Edinburgh, and the Royal College of Art, London. Now resident in London, he has lived and worked in Canada and Japan. Solo exhibitions include, ‘Uniforms’ at the Japan Foundation, Toronto (2006). Recent Group exhibitions include ‘Shot and go’ on the Island of San Servolo, Venice (2007), ‘Event Cities’ at Gallery 44, Toronto (2006) and ‘reGeneration’ at the Musee de l’Elysee in Lausanne (2005).
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