Kobie Nel

blow with the wind

Utendørs ved Klosteret 2 på Nordnes, 5007 Bergen

Opening Tuesday 21st of June 2022 at 18:00

blow with the wind is a sculptural intervention on a pair of curved metal shapes located on the sidewalk at Klosteret 2 in Bergen. The metal frames have previously been used to display information signs in the street. The two frames look like portals, and also give associations to round-arched windows, the kind one might find in old churches.

In her new work, Nel fills the two curved metal shapes with sheets of natural latex that she has created in her studio. The texture and sight of Nel's sculptures is there to be noticed and explored by passers-by, a sudden change in their everyday surroundings, highlighting and using shapes that one often doesn't notice or pay attention to. The sudden appearance of the strange material that is now inhabiting the frames may spark curiosity and a closer inspection.

Latex is the soft white substance found beneath the bark of a mature rubber tree. The material is liquid, but dries fast, and in its dry form it has a skin-like feel. Latex is a material many artists have explored, among them Kaari Upson and Lynda Benglis, with her pieces made by pouring latex on to the floor. It is a similar technique Nel has worked with when creating her sculptures for the street in Bergen.

Throughout the exhibition period, the artist will change, modify and add to the structures of latex, and the latex will also degrade due to the weather, wind and being touched by people. The artist is interested in the joy of touching things, forming them into new shapes and, in so doing, having our own bodily materiality reaffirmed.

Kobie Nel's working methods are based on working on site, doing fieldwork, photographing, filming, writing and material experiments. Often her projects draw on archives, history, ritual and ecological awareness.

Kobie Nel, digital collage, 2022.

Kobie Nel

Kobie Nel is an artist from South Africa based in Bergen. She holds an MA from Bergen Academy of Art and Design and a BA in photography from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, Australia. In recent years she has participated in exhibitions among others at Vestlandsutstillingen 2022, Skulpturtriennalen 2021, Parabol – Kunsthall 3,14, Gyldenpris Kunsthall, Bergen Kjøtt, Tag Team Studio, Bergen Kunsthall, Project Space, Beijing, Hong Kong Museum for Contemporary Art, Beijing and the National Portrait Gallery, Canberra. In 2017 her artist book Black Lake Monologue was published by CODA Press, Bergen.

Volt’s programme for 2022 is supported by Bergen City Council, Arts Council Norway and Vestland County Council.

Poster design: NODE Berlin Oslo

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