Thomas Zipp / The Forbidden Conduct (Deviations in Conservative Societies)

Jan 22 – Feb 26, 2011

In The Forbidden Conduct the gallery space becomes a meditation on human psyche. The key to unlocking the warped and dark happenings of the large canvases, and the abstract geometric sculptures, lies in the black and white Xeroxes that hang next to them. These Xeroxes present faces of “society keepers”, as the artist calls them. They are priests and nuns, teachers and psychiatrists, all of whose pictures the artist found online and then dealt with whimsically, so as to leave them semi-hidden and anonymous. Their mask of pedagogic sanity is undermined as we are presented with their inner states of being, governed by fantasy, urges and fears. The paintings exist on the seam between figurative and abstract, functioning as hallucinatory mirages that have a strong affinity to the concerns of European Surrealism. The sculptures are in fact mind games, meant to stimulate our sense of analysis, but here they are presented painted white and molded together, thus devoid of their functionality, becoming objects for examination in themselves.


Thomas Zipp (b. 1966), lives and works in Berlin. He is one of the most prominent artists that work in Europe today. For his first solo exhibition in the gallery (World Health, Mental Health, 2008), Zipp created an all encompassing installation of a cathedral. For his much-celebrated solo exhibition in Kunsthalle Fridericianum, Kassel, Zipp transformed the entire museum space into a gigantic mental hospital.