Galerie Crystal Ball

Fort – Horror Vacui

Exhibition opening on Fri. 13. November at 8 p.m.
13.11. – 29.12.2009
Finissage am Die. 29. December at 8 p.m.

Horror Vacui, Fort

The artist collective Fort (Anna Jandt, Jenny Kropp und Alberta Niemann) work through a system of references using documentary, objects, stories and their interrelations.  In their installations and engineered spaces, Fort construct precise interiors with conscious references made through the choice and placement of objects. They create poetic, surreal spaces and performances. Thing, action and derivation, as well as their historical and scientific evaluation collide with a dream like logic- through the revelation of complex unconscious structures and enigmatic backgrounds.

The stories of the entities, excerpts and apportions become parts of a mystic documentation. Things are copied, multiplied and  reflected. They become signs, representative information of a world remembered, transforming into catalysts of cognitive processes of a cruel, poetic reality.

At this mysterious point of human perception; the twins, the forgotten, the unclear identity, Fort begin – with their belief in the impossible and the legendary in this world, to work for a change.

Slider image

One-Cubic-Decimeter-To-Boil-The-Ocean, Fort

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Horror Vacui, Fort

past presentations

  • POINT GRAY, Installation, Action, Show
  • Sequences Real Time Art Festival Reykjavik, Island &Bremer Kunst Satellit/ Museum Weserburg Bremen 2008
  • HOTEL MARIENBAD, Installation (in collaboration with Claudia Heidorn and Anneli Käsmayr – dp) KW Institute For Contemporary Art Berlin 2008

Wolfgang Müller – Séance Vocibus Avium

Exhibition opening in the Crystal Ball Gallery and the Dörrie Priess Gallery on 25 September at 7 pm

26. 9. – 6. 11. 2009

Hawaii Krausschwanz, Wolfgang Müller

Séance Vocibus Avium (I)

The only completely exterminated bird originally native to Europe is the North Atlantic giant auklet (Alca impennis). Its last occurrence is off the southern Icelandic coast on the rocky island of Eldey. On 3 June 1844, the last two birds, a breeding pair, were killed there by the fishermen Jón Brandsson, Sigurður Ísleifsson and Ketill Ketillson from Hafnir by turning their necks in order to sell their bellows and offal to a Danish bird collector. This silences the bird’s song forever.

After his first trip to Iceland in 1990, Wolfgang Müller formed a giant auk from modelling clay, fabric, paper, paint and chicken feathers. In 1994, on the occasion of the 160th anniversary of its extermination, he reconstructed the bird’s vocalizations in the radio play studio of the Icelandic radio station stöð 2, using the Icelandic actress Kristbjörg Kjeld as his medium. Using modern studio technology, the bird’s calls are reconstructed and thus made audible for the first time since its extinction in 1844. The reconstruction is based on historical scientific descriptions, such as those of Dr. Alfred Newton from Cambridge. In 1854 he asked the sailors from Hafnir about the last minutes in the life of the last giant eagles and published their detailed statements in 1858 in the ornithological journal “Ibis”.

Other bird species, mostly exterminated by direct or indirect human intervention, originate mainly from North and Central America, Madagascar, Australia, New Zealand and the islands of the Pacific Ocean. Since the 16th century, an estimated one hundred and fifty bird species have become extinct. Descriptions of the vocalizations of very few of these exist.

In addition to the giant eagle, ten other bird species are among them, whose calls can now be heard simultaneously in the Galerie Dörrie * Priess and the Galerie Crystal Ball. Wolfgang Müller gave ten well-known musicians scientific descriptions of a selected species and asked the respective participants to leave their bodies and slip into the bird body assigned to them. At the moment the bird becomes a bird, music and musicians disappear. The calls of long-silenced birds resound.

Séance Vocibus Avium

  1. Coturnix Novae-Zelandiae, Neuseeländische Schwarzbrustwachtel, † 1875. (Namosh)
  2. Hawaii-Krausschwanz, Moho Nobilis, † 1934. (Max Müller)
  3. Assumption-Weißkehlralle, Dryolimnas Cuvieri Abbiotti, Unbekannt. (Frieder Butzmann)
  4. Jamaika Teufelssturmvogel, Pterodroma Hasitata Caribbaea, Unbekannt. (Justus Köhnke)
  5. Mauritiusfruchttaube, Alectroenas Nitidissima, † 1930. (Annette Humpe)
  6. Präriehuhn, Tympanuchus Cupidio Cupido, † 1932. (Francoise Cactus/Brezel Göring)
  7. Lachkauz, Sceloglaux Albifacies, † 1914. (Nicholas Bussmann)
  8. Lord-Howe-Inselrasse des Norfolkstars, Aplonis Fuscus Hullianus, † 1923. (Hartmut Andryczuk)
  9. Guadalupe-Caracara, Polyborus Lutosus, † 1900. (Khan)
  10. Riesenalk, Alca impennis, † 1844. (Kristbjörg Kjeld/Wolfgang Müller)

Séance Vocibus Avium (II)

The corresponding radio play “Séance Vocibus Avium” of the artist just won the Karl-Szuka-Award 2009 – considered the most renowned award for audio art in Europe. In the exhibition Séance Vocibus Avium, taking place in two Berlin galleries – Crystal Ball and Dörrie Priess – Wolfgang Müller presents drawings and audio sounds he produced, based on historical and scientific descriptions of eleven extinct birds. The simultaneous presentation of Séance Vocibus Avium in the context of two different gallery spaces continues Wolfgang Müller’s concept: the synchronism of analogy and diversity. Wolfgang Müller enlisted the help of prominent musician friends: Namosh, Khan, Justus Köhncke, Nicholas Bussmann, Max Müller, Stereo Total, Frieder Butzmann and Annette Humpe- in the reconstruction of the bird sounds. With delicately rendered colour pencil drawings Müller approaches the shape of the lost birds.

His reconstruction process begins with the available materials: taxidermy birds, historical images and scientific descriptions concerning the behavior of the species. The resulting drawings are different for each species, but unmistakably related. Wolfgang Müller opens up a novel space with his work. It stands in a touching alliance to the scientific efforts, to describe and comprehend these no longer existing animals. A new reality is created.

Séance Vocibus Avium, Wolfgang Müller


Bob Tooke – Don’t Give The Birds Money!

Exhibition opening on Fri. 17th. July, 8 p.m.
Exhibition duration: 18. 07. – 28. 08. 2009
Finissage on 28 May 2009 August at 8 p.m.

Please Don’t Give The Birds Money!, Bob Tooke

Bob Tookes´art work could be seen as a continuation and new developement of classic american folk art. After his art studies at Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and the completion of his “Master of Fine Arts” in 1991 he went to Hamburg. Besides his art work  he has also worked as a musician. Over the years Bob Tooke joined in several group- and solo shows in Germany, Europe and the U.S.

Bob Tooke about Bob Tooke in the Crystal Ball Gallery

The unpretentious naïve style of his paintings is thematically connected to his music and his song lyrics. The works show a joyful but mysterious humour. For the paintings he uses leftover pieces of wood, wooden boxes and lost properties that come from commercial and urban contexts. Thereon the painted scenes are  narrative and playful and in the same way enigmatic. The artists´ painting is laconic, transporting through his spontaneous gestures, collecting the fleeting impressions  of  moments. Subjects and text show in their direct confrontation disastrous  realationships and stories. Portraits of the heros of Country and Blues standing opposite a series of burning tour busses and private cars, who represent the artists of mainstream, that should dare to verify itself. Beloved and unloved show up obsessively worked out in ironic series, existing equal to each other. This implies the conception and joy of transforming and expressing a culture that is critical of commercialism.


Elke Graalfs – Kopfüber

Opening of the exhibition on Fri. 19. June at 8 p.m. 20.06. – 11.07.2009
Finissage, performance and big summer festival in the crystal ball: at the Sat. 11. July from 5 p.m.

White Little, Elke Graalfs

Elke Graalfs shows an environmental room installation that is based on painting and adding the point of view of the angle as a method of medial effect. The artist combines in her works the picturesque and drawing gestures to build constitutional reality in relation to the time. Through the specific use of  colour spaces, the construction and creation of textures, fabric and surface are revealed. In actual pictures they are stepping over the canvas, the pure picture itself and also work with the techniques of collage. The ground itself, the ripped paper conquers as a potential picture carrier the space. The works of Elke Graalfs examine functions of visual perception and show strongly the moment of recognition of an image and it’s personal construction.

At the Finissage, the Summer Party of the gallery the artist will show her performance “Schnee von Gestern”


Max Müller – An und für Sich Wertlos

Opening of the exhibition Fri. 17 April, 8 p.m.
Exhibition duration: 18. 04. -22. 05. 2009
Finissage: 22. 5a., 8 p.m.

Woman with weapon, Max Müller, drawing

Max Müller was born in 1963 in Wolfsburg, and is an author, musician and draughtsman. The subjects of his handmade drawings include portraits, popular and socially critically scenes; reproductions of magazines and newspapers. Compared to the sources of the images, Müllers works develop a difference through their proportional and structural deviation of his drawing gesture and the commentary titles. The colour- pencil and ball point pen worked sheets swing between the poles of describable reality and its relative aspect. Together the pictures and the text develop a relevant relationship. They work as a supporting polarized couple. Parts of the image are distorted, other parts are merely suggested. In this way the title commentary, omissions, and emphasis structure the reception of the picture. It creates an enigmatic trace of the conscious use of information. Max Müller is working in this slightly in between space, the discovered contradiction, an inexplicit covering which shows up gaps of interpretation, missing information or its overload, and their own apprehension that approaches the truth. Besides various band- and solo projects Max Müller has since 1986 been the songwriter and singer of the still active band “Mutter”. Actually he shows with his solo album: „Die Nostalgie ist auch nicht mehr das, was sie einmal war” brilliance in text and music.


Aylin Kayser & Christian Metzner – Ikarus

07. 04. – 10. 04. 2009
Finissage: Reading by Svealena Kutschke
Other opening hours: 7. up to 10. April: 8 p.m. – midnight

Ikarus wax lamp, Aylin Kayer/ Christian Metzner

Aylin Kayser and Christian Metzner are the designers of the Lamp Ikarus, which has already won several design awards, such as design contest 2008, in Imm. Most recently, IKARUS was introduced to a wider public in November 2008 with the support of the Crystal Ball gallery, in the TELEVISION magazine “Chic”. The concept of Icarus goes beyond form and a purely pramatic function. Through his mediation of content, as well as his thus conceived, built-in defunctionalization, Ikarus consciously enters the field of the visual arts.

Icarus consists of 90% paraffin, which is stabilized by an internal stainless steel construction and steel wire ropes. The bulb inside the lamp develops heat and melts the wax sleeve. The lampshade is subject to constant deformation, which runs differently with each model and makes it unique. The wax eventually drips off and creates a new sculpture. The melting in the deformation process depends on the operating time and the ambient temperature.

According to the artist, Icarus is intended to stimulate the viewer in a poetic and metaphorical way to deal with his own interaction and consumption of energy. The wax lamp Ikarus demonstrates the short-livedness of today’s product world and ultimately destroys itself in its function. With the acquisition of IKARUS, one obtains not only a design object, but also a process that, due to its transformative representation, represents an exciting and contemplative live performance.

The Crystal Ball Gallery shows IKARUS in its transformation on 7 May. until 10. April 2009

IKARUS wax lamp Arte CHIC

Françoise Cactus – Häkeldiven und Starletten

20. 02. – 03. 04. 2009

Amy Wollmaus, Francoise Cactus

Françoise Cactus is a drummer and singer in the band Stereo Total. She also writes books, draws, paints and crochets. The unpretentious style of Françoise Cactus’ artistic work has an unmistakable charm. Her artistic works are first and foremost simple and cool.

She also draws, paints and chrochets. Her artistic works have an unpretentious distinctive style that is in both ways charming and cool. Because of this, the oeuvre of Françoise Cactus has an esprit who defies the conformist strategies of image in the art business. Françoise Cactus for example once presented her drawings in a well known TV magazine to the viewer from a Kreuzberg park bench. Her cardigan object “Wollita”, a 1,67 cm crocheted doll caused a press scandal at the exhibition „When Love Turns To Poison.” The story about can be read in the book: „Wollita – Vom Wollknäuel zum Superstar” published 2004 at Martin Schmitz, Berlin. In the exhibition Häkeldiven & Starletten” at gallery Crystal Ball Berlin Françoise Cactus shows the friends of Wollita. The three- dimensional portraits of Amy Wollmaus, Kratz Jones, Nina Häkel and Debbie Hairy. In her paintings and the freely worked gouache and marker drawings the artist describes the glamour and the darkly longings of stars. The dream of extravagance, fame and jet set lifestyle exchanges with Hollywood film excerpts, these are the subjects of the also reduced cool but humorous portraits and drawings of the artist. Nancy & Sid, the Peaches, Britney Spears and other stars are in the row of visitors who appear in Françoises´ lounge universe.

For the opening of the show at Crystal Ball the Françoise Cactus will do a performance. Also a limited edition postcard series of the new friends of Wollita will be released.


Henrik Jacob – Hall Of Fame

16. 01. – 13. 02. 2009
Exhibition opening with performance by the artist

Hall Of Fame, Henrik Jacob

Henrik Jacob is showing an installation at gallery Crystal Ball which in a charming way plays with the perspectives of the exhibition itself. You could assume Henrik Jacob cuts the recipients view wittingly in halves. Since often perception is limited, Jacob offers half in his setting as well. Henrik Jakobs installations irritate in a light and humorous way our will of interpretation of art works and the connected myth. Furthermore the artist presents a selection of his well known plasticine pictures. The modelling ductile material opens and transcends the artist’s mode. It`s becoming an agent in subverting monumental artists gestures. Finger and nailprints of the galerists, curators and buyers leave marks on his work and constantly change it. The exhibition is accompanied by fortune telling from the artist’s hands about the success of the presentation.


The Crystal Ball Ball

29. 11 – 31. 12. 2008
Friends/ artists of the gallery
Within the exhibition time there is the “Salon Arbiträr” with DJ Catastrophe every Friday from 8 pm

Zoe Thorne: Becks Gold

The third group exhibition of Crystal Ball associate artists of the program with good friends and companions of the gallery for a big versatile presentation of art works. The exhibition should help to secure the gallery work in the future. Parallel to this the “Circle of Friends Kristallkugel” is launched under the protectorate of Svea Lena Kutschke. I want to thank the artist who participate or donate their works for this presentation and all of the debut members of the Circle of friends Kristallkugel!


Participating artists are: Julia Baier, Norbert Bauer, Thomas Behling, Matthias Bösche, Marion Bösen, Francoise Cactus, Alexander Callsen, Stefan Demming, Marcia Farquhar, Anja Fußbach, Elke Graalfs, Marco Goldenstein, Christian Haake, Mareike Hube, Juwelia, Aylin Kayser, Andreas Kotulla, Ins A Kromminga, Max Müller, Wolfgang Müller, Astrid Küver, Jonathan Kroll, Monika Müller Kroll, Henrik Jacob, Michael Jungblut, Lydia Karstadt, Martin Löhr, Stu Mead, Kay Michalak, J. Maizlish Mole, Sugár Meliton, Flowrian Pauly,  Hannes Niepold, Veronika Schumacher, Alexander Steffens, Annette Stemmann, Zoe Thorne, Silke Thoss, Bob Tooke, Heike Walter, Barbara Wagner, Daniela Weber, Sabine Wewer, Ming Wong und weitere


Juwelia – Putzi Dreams

10. – 21. 11. 2008
Painting/Performance/Installation
Vernissage with Performance
Further performances: 24th, 31st, 10.
and the 7th, 14th, 11-21st.
Finissage with Performance

Juwelia, photo: Annette Frick

Die bekannte Berliner Travestie und Performance Künstlerin Juwelia wird im Oktober/November zu Gast in der Galerie Crystal Ball sein. Die Ausstellung zeigt einen Überblick der aktuellen Strategien der Künstlerin. Malerei, Performance und Installation bilden über ein liebevoll gestaltetes Ambiente das Meublement einer leuchtenden Gegenwelt voller Blumenbouqets, Torten, Schoßhündchen und Selbstinszenierungen. Eine urbane Insel der gescheiterten und erfüllten Liebesgeschichten materialisiert sich. Juwelias feinsinnige Spitzen menschlicher Erfahrung blitzen dabei kontrastierend in ihrem bewusst trashigen Diseusen Vortrag umso stärker hervor.

Zur Eröffnung und an weiteren Terminen am Freitag wird Juwelia Auszüge aus ihrem aktuellen Performance Programm in der “Kristallkugel” darbieten.

Crystal Ball Berlin