Book Presentation by Karen Vermeren
Address: Books People Place, Crellerstr. 26, 10827 Berlin
From June until September 2017, Karen Vermeren was an artist in residence at Air Berlin Alexanderplatz. Vermeren links the quarry Rüdersdorf with the city of Berlin, in which the limestone from the mine – transformed in cement and concrete – appears in new patterns and constellations. The transparent drawings are merged in an artist book and will be presented by the artist in Books People Places in Berlin.
Karen Vermeren is a researcher at Sint Lucas University College of Art & Design in Antwerp. In her work, she points out her preference for mountains, cratered landscapes and tectonic plate movements. She draws and paints images that seemingly battle how geological structures and multilayered natural formations can be transmitted onto two dimensional, sometimes transparent surfaces.
fragment from the book by Elke Couchez:
“By way of a concluding remark, it is difficult not to touch on recent debates about the ‘geological turn’. Scientists from multiple fields have announced a new geological age, the so-called Anthropocene, succeeding the Holocene. They argue that in this new era, the single force influencing the planet is man’s impact on the earth, for instance in terms of affecting weather patterns and planetary biodiversity.[i] Although Vermeren does not directly point to the disastrous environmental consequences of this man-centred era, her work raises questions about the various factors – physical, social, political, economic, cultural – that act upon and transform the earth. Instead of looking at the organic processes that have shaped the earth, as geologists do, she uses stones to consider the anthropogenic processes that shape our environment. This book can thus be read as a case of reverse geology, reading time not backwards, into the deep geological time of the past, but forwards. And it thereby poses the fairly urgent question of how artists can creatively and critically respond to a changing geologic now.[ii]”