Hedi Slimane: Berlin
March 11–May 31, 2004
P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center presents a large-scale project by Hedi Slimane. He was invited by P.S.1 Chief Curator Klaus Biesenbach to be in the artist residency program at Kunst-Werke (KW) Studio Program in Berlin from 2000-2002. At the heart of the project are photographs Slimane took of his environment, people, and various places he visited while living in Berlin. These photographs were first made into a book, published by Karl Lagerfeld in his EDITION 7L, a series of books published with Steidl publications. This is the second book in Slimane's career. The first, Intermission, was published in 2002 by the Palazzo Pitti in Florence and the Palais de Tokyo in Paris.
For KW in Berlin, Slimane developed Berlin, an installation composed of hundreds of digitized photographs projected onto a large cube in the gallery space. For P.S.1, Berlin is installed in the Kunsthalle space on the second floor. The cube, which measures 11 feet tall by 15 feet wide, divides the space into four distinct viewing quadrants allowing the visitor to discretely experience each wall of projections.
Of his time in Berlin, Slimane notes, "Berlin is an open space for me—I don't feel like I need to make any effort when I am here. I take the overnight train from Paris, and I arrive really early in the morning, when the city is only slightly awake and silent. The train going from west to east creates a sort of urban intimacy [...]
"I don't know many people in Berlin. In addition, I don't speak German. So my rapport with the city is quite easy and immediate, without any particular expectations [...] It offers a totally different perspective from Paris. Berlin is constantly being reinvented." (excerpted from the Summer 2002 issue of Index Magazine, interview with Klaus Biesenbach.)
Born in 1968 in Paris, Hedi Slimane studied Art History at the Ecole du Louvre, and was educated as a tailor. After working with Yves Saint Laurent, he became the chief designer for men's clothing for Christian Dior in 2000. In 2002 he was named the International Designer of the Year in New York. Berlin is curated by P.S.1 Chief Curator Klaus Biesenbach and is made possible by support from The Cultural Services of the French Embassy.
Since 1999, P.S.1 has collaborated with Berlin's Kunst-Werke in a continuing series of programs.