XVII, 2023

car installation with garden waste.

February 16 – February 19, 2023
Location: Bauhütte Kreuzberg e.V., Friedrichstraße 19, 10969 Berlin

In her practice, the multidisciplinary artist Kinga Kielczynska investigates the relationship between humanity and nature in a transgressive and transformative way. Several of her projects are centered around the Bialowicza primeval forest in Poland, a UNESCO World Heritage site: one of these is her film 10 Millions + 1, which records the fight between activists and loggers amid the forest’s splendor. Her working process is influenced and informed by her ecological commitment to use materials that are already within reach, and thus not produced specifically for artistic purposes. Disparate components thus come together in the temporality of the exhibition, and afterwards return to their previous surroundings.

For CARPARK, Kinga Kielczynska produced XVII (2023), part of her ongoing series of cars bursting with plants. The title XVII refers to the make and model of the car, the Fiat Seicento. The Italian word seicento means seventeenth century, commonly written out as XVII in Latin. The car is filled to the top with vegetation and plant remains, creating the impression that the plants are overwhelming the car, taking up every corner of it. The vehicle appears almost submerged in the dried plants. The vegetation itself is made up of leftover garden cuttings, and varies depending on the season. The car is parked on the grounds of Bauhütte Kreuzberg, where it can be spotted by passersby from the street.

The project is inspired by scenes of ruined, abandoned buildings or other artifacts which are being taken over by growing vegetation. Examples include Tito’s Political School in Croatia and abandoned shopping malls across the world. The piece also draws from Alan Weisman’s book The World Without Us, a 2007 non-fiction book about what would happen to the natural and built environment if humans suddenly disappeared. The successive project was exhibited during Manifesta 12, Palermo, in Very Project Space in Berlin, and during Warsaw Gallery Weekend in front of the iconic landmark Palace of Culture and Science, as well as in undisclosed locations inside the forest.



KINGA KIELCZYNKSA (b. 1972 in Warsaw) received her MFA from the Sandberg Institute in Amsterdam and is a graduate of the Gerrit Rietveld Academy, Amsterdam. Her media include video, drawing, text, and installation. Her multidisciplinary artistic practice reflects upon our relationship with nature. In recent works, she has explored the boundaries between natural and human-made materials. Her work has been shown, among others, at: EXILE Gallery, Vienna (2022); MoCA, Belgrade (2020); Goethe Pop Up, Minneapolis (2019); Manifesta 12, Palermo (2018); Aether, Sofia (2018); SAVVY Contemporary, Berlin (2017); FOAM, Amsterdam (2014); MOMA, Warsaw (2012).