‘Unconventional Bubbles’ —
AN UNUSUAL TOUR THROUGH BERLIN WITH DAVID SHRIGLEY AND RUINART
The eye of the observer usually encounters paintings, sculptures and installations in large all-white painted spaces. Enveloped in bright, often artificial light, they tend to leave the viewer awestruck. But what happens when art is taken out of its classic exhibition space? The collaboration of RUINART‘s artistic Carte Blanche with British artist David Shrigley addressed precisely this aspect during the Berlin Gallery Weekend. The artist’s works were displayed, not as you might expect, in museums and galleries. But rather where everyday life takes place. Under the title ‘Unconventional bubbles at unusual places’ the works of Shrigley were shown in numerous, unexpected, but typical Berlin locations, like a kiosk at Ku’damm, a Berlin Späti or Witty’s Currywurst.
Perhaps an unconventional idea at first sight, but also a shrewd reference to the closures of arts and cultural venues during the lockdowns – when museums and galleries are closed, then art must be shown in public places. A logical consequence and a concept that also fits very well with Shrigley’s extraordinary art. His often deliberately naive-looking drawings take inspiration from real life, simplifying and elevating it at the same time. These images, punctuated with concise texts express the whole absurdity of everyday life – the banal, the embarrassing as well as the precarious – in an unsurpassably oblique and succinct manner. The special exhibition spaces also changes the viewer’s gaze. His works become more accessible. And perhaps even a little more commonplace. After all, who would expect the cultural asset of art in a Hauslücke or the 131 Bar?
Unusual and always with a wink, Shrigley’s six works presented themselves in Berlin. The words ‘‘It won’t be like this forever’ were emblazoned on a newspaper stand, as if it could be a headline from the daily press. He encourages reflection and uses humor as a means to raise awareness of various social issues.
“HIS OFTEN DELIBERATELY NAIVE-LOOKING DRAWINGS TAKE INSPIRATION FROM REAL LIFE, SIMPLIFYING AND ELEVATING IT AT THE SAME TIME.”
David Shrigley’s collaboration with Ruinart already started last year. For his working process he looked at the history of the champagne house in detail. He ambled through the vineyards, explored the cellars, observed the expressions and gestures of those who work there. The result: ‘Unconventional Bubbles’, an artistic reinterpretation of Maison Ruinart. A comprehensive work. Very playful in its interpretation and something completely new for the traditional champagne house. Simply unconventional.
Ruinart and Art:
Ruinart, the oldest champagne house, will be celebrating its 300th anniversary in September 2029. In its long and rich history, Ruinart fostered partnerships with artists almost since the beginning. Alphonse Mucha was one of them in 1896. Today, Ruinart is taking part in the world’s largest art fairs like Art Basel and Frieze – through an annual carte blanche programme, Ruinart collaborates with contemporary artists each year. These projects allow the champagne house to show in a contemporary way its heritage and history through the vision of the chosen artist. Until 2029, 10 artworks will be installed in the heart of the Maison’s historic terroir, bringing art, creativity and sustainability together. It is part of the next step in the company’s ecological program, following the “Second Skin” launched in 2020 as an eco-designed alternative to traditional champagne boxes.
The tour concluded with unconventional food pairing by star chef Dalad Kambhu—for instance the main course, a sweet Thai beef curry with zucchini, was combined with Ruinart Rosé.