The exhibition "Zuspiel" ("Pass the Ball") at Portikus is the start of a series of exhibitions with the same name that take place at various art institutes in Germany and Switzerland. The series is an initiative of Siemens Kulturprogramm. The artists participating differ, but each exhibition includes two artists who begin a dialogue, "passing the ball" to each other.

At Portikus Frankfurt the artist Ayşe Erkmen (b. 1950 and living in Istanbul) and Hamburg-based Andreas Slominski (b. 1959) present new objects and installations specially created for this exhibition and involving the specific spatial-architectural and historic conditions of Portikus.

Both Ayşe Erkmen's and Andreas Slominski's works are characterised by a spatial-situational approach, directing our attention to what is latent, to trivia, and to what is seemingly unimportant. The two artists come to quite individual solutions. Ayşe Erkmen's works are solely site-specific, i.e. not transferable, as their points of departure lie in a specific site and its spatiality, its function and its history. For "Zuspiel", Ayşe Erkmen has placed 7 security gates, so-called metal-detectors as we know them from airports, between the classical entrance portals of Portikus. The entrance area is thus transformed to a security zone, in which the detectors indicate whether the exhibition visitors have metal with them through shrill sounds and light signals. The imaginary threshold between city and art, between inside and outside, becomes the scene of a situation characterising our times: control as a precondition for freedom of movement and security. In Ayşe Erkmen's work, the detectors' sounds of alert are not followed by the refusal of admission; rather, we become aware of our own physical presence and of that of the space surrounding us. Erkmen became internationally known for the works she created during a one-year DAAD residency in Berlin and by her participation in the Biennale in Istanbul in 1995.

Andreas Slominski is currently visiting professor at the Städelschule in Frankfurt. Apart from his lively exhibition activities here and abroad, he is known to the Frankfurt audience by his contribution to the group exhibition "Karaoke" at Portikus (1994) and by works in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art Frankfurt. For the exhibition "Zuspiel", Andreas Slominski has transported gigantic sails of various windmills into Portikus. From now until March 24, the end of the exhibition, they will be chopped up bit by bit, sawn apart and burnt in a small oven installed at Portikus. Apart from its considerable sculptural quality, this work becomes a metaphor of a lost world, which in a cyclic transformation process of elemental forces (wind-fire-ashes/smoke) simultaneously announces a new beginning.

Photos: Katrin Schilling