Harm van den Dorpel

High-volume, high-velocity + high-variety readings for William Kherbek’s Ultralife: a product launch

15 March 2017

William Kherbek is launching his novel, Ultralife, at Berlin’s Broken Dimanche Press on March 15.

The speculative-fiction-but-uncomfortably-close-to-real-life satire is published by Arcadia Missa and comes with a blurb that cites a definition of Big Data:

“Big data (n) is high-volume, high-velocity and/ or high-variety information assets that demand cost-effective, innovative forms of information processing that enable enhanced insight, decision making, and process automation.”

The event will include readings from Kherbek himself, Elvia Wilk, Polly Trope, and Jesse Darling, as well as Sarah M. Harrison, who published All The Things with the London-based gallery and press last year. There will also be a screening of Kherbek’s video-poem collection ‘Retrodiction’ by artist Harm van den Dorpel and Paloma Rodríguez-Carrington of left gallery.

Books bought or pre-ordered on the night will include a “complimentary, bespoke haiku.”

See the FB event page for details.**

William Kherbek, Ultralife (2017), pub. Arcadia Missa Publishing, London.

Presenting Harm van den Dorpel’s new online project Hybrid Vigor

30 January 2017
Harm van den Dorpel, ‘Death Imitates Language’, (2016/17). Installation view.
Courtesy the artist + Neumeister Bar-Am, Berlin.
Berlin-based artist Harm van den Dorpel just released new online project Hybrid Vigor in early January, 2017. 
The web-based work brings together elements of the biological and technological through an algorithmic system of shapes and lines, creating a feedback between the input and the software used. Often working between online and IRL exhibition spaces, Dorpel’s work explores randomly generated outcomes. Recent projects include Talking Turtles (2016) that looks at the relationship between visual graphics, software engineering and artificial intelligence, and Death Imitates Language (2016/17) where micro feedback (likes etc) would determine which works lived on.
The title Hybrid Vigor refers to the biological process of reproduction where “the tendency of a cross-bred individual [will] show qualities superior to those of both parents” or as the artist explains “the process of selecting candidates for breeding, examining the results, and using those results to further breed to eliminate or emphasise particular traits in animals and flowers.”
Harm van den Dorpel, ‘Talking Turtles’ (2016). Courtesy the artist.
The project itself  is constantly evolving over time, and changing depending on who visits the site, or whether no one visits the site. If there is no activity, the site will begin to navigate on its own. Gradual diversity and mechanical incest converge in generative aesthetics, explained further by Dorpel:
“Technically (or biologically), all properties of a drawing (angles, smoothness, shape, color, transparency, scale, position, etc.) are stored in a long string of 0s and 1s: a digital chromosome. These chromosomes hermetically define the appearance of each work (or specimen), just like how the genotype of human beings is defined by their DNA.” 
When two drawings ‘mate’, their chromosomes align. The process is continual and repetitive to explore diversity in ‘offspring’ works as they inherit pieces of information (a form of DNA) from ‘ancestors’. The project is set within the context of algorithm and evolution, processes that feel both incredibly natural and unnatural. The publicly accessible project welcomes as many visitors as possible to participate in the slow and gradual project that will continue without ‘freeze’ over time.
Dorpel also worked in collaboration with Bill Kouligas and Amnesia Scanner in current project Lexachast where a live streaming of pictures from Flickr and DeviantArt are being uploaded and algorithmically filtered to show the most NSFW (Not Safe For Work; describes Internet that is generally inappropriate) images.**

Harm van den Dorpel @ Neumeister Bar-Am, Nov 26 – Feb 4

25 November 2016

Harm van den Dorpel is presenting Death Imitates Language at Berlin’s Neumeister Bar-Am, along with Shana Moulton‘s Der Würfel installation, opening November 26 and running to February 4.

The second by the Berlin-based artist in the gallery, the show is part of an ongoing collaborative project of the same name, between van den Dorpel and self-designed artificial intelligence. Extracting and collating recurring aesthetic elements of the 20th century European collage works that have inspired and informed him, the artist has devised a ‘genetic algorithm’ to generate two-dimensional collages of his own. The approach is described as being that of artificial ‘breeding’ and the five unique works selected from this growing population — that you can see at death.imitates.org — will be on display along with an overview of the entire process.

Meanwhile, occupying the Der Würfel eighty-centimetre cubed project space, Moulton’s Only you can build the bridge on which you, and only you, must cross the river of your life presents her focus on the “interplay between consumerism, commercialized New Age philosophies and fragmented reminiscences of other artistic styles, such as Land Art” with ongoing video series Whispering Pines (2002 – ).

See the Neumeister Bar-Am website for details.**

Harm van den Dorpel, 'Assemblage (everything vs. anything)' (2013). UV print on hand-cut PETG, 120 x 100 x 110 cm. Courtesy the artist, UCCA and Wilkinson Gallery, London.
Harm van den Dorpel, ‘Assemblage (everything vs. anything)’ (2013). Courtesy the artist, UCCA + Wilkinson Gallery, London.

MAUVE @ Club Pro LA, Oct 21 – Nov 13

21 October 2016

Vienna-based artist-run space MAUVE is presenting a group exhibition at Los Angeles’ Club Pro LA, opening October 21 and running to November 13.

Featuring artists Harm van den Dorpel, Maria Cozma, Daniel Ferstl, Titania Seidl, Lukas Thaler, Rita Vitorelli and Eugen Wist, the show brings works curated by the Austrian gallery, exploring “experimental ways of curating, thereby connecting the artistic scene in Vienna to the rest of the world” since its inauguration in 2012.

According to the press release, the space collaborates closely with the artists it works with, in an effort to bringing production, discourse and curation more closely together, particularly in relation to the MAUVE gallery founders’ own practices, which includes that of Ferstl, Seidl and Thaler, also presenting work in the show.

The exhibition will include a publication with commissioned texts by Paul Becker, Birke Gorm and Nicholas Hoffman.

See the FB event page for details.**

MAUVE (2016) @ Club Pro LA, Los Angeles.

Adriana Ramić + Harm van den Dorpel @ LD50, Dec 10 – Jan 28

10 December 2015

Adriana Ramić and Harm van den Dorpel team up for a joint exhibition titled The vertebral Silence, running at London’s LD50 from December 10 to January 28, 2016.

The show by New York-based Ramić and Berlin-based Dorpel (with whom we have published an interview here) comes without a press release or extensive details about its themes or material nature.

It’s the accompanying web page, however, at van den Dorpel’s delinear.info, that gives a hint as to what to expect: each page brings a seemingly random composition of text (“Sacred number of Eris, Goddess of Discord (along with 17 and 5).”) and image.

See the exhibition website for (limited) details. **


Harm van den Dorpel @ Narrative Projects, Nov 10 – Dec 19

9 November 2015

Harm van den Dorpel‘s IOU solo exhibition is showing at London’s Narrative Projects, opening November 10 and running to December 19.

The Netherlands-born and Berlin-based artist’s show includes a press release that carries on a rather personal though politically relevant rundown of a history of free information becoming increasingly monetised and therefore restricted, from Trent Reznor’s obscure Ghosts series, released on Creative Commons, to Google’s cessation of RSS protocol, along with its step towards a “structured (semantic) web”.

The works on show at IOU will consist of large sheets of thermosensitive paper, applying the same principal of thermal paper receipts that use heat instead of ink for a printing method that will slowly disappear in what the press release calls, “a ghostly transaction timestamped in the supposedly perpetual blockchain, our only hope”.

See the Facebook event page for details. **

Harm van den Dorpel, 'Untitled' from the In Exile series (2013). Digital print on paper and glass, 105x105cm. Image courtesy the artist.
Harm van den Dorpel, ‘Untitled’ from the In Exile series (2013). Image courtesy the artist.

Inflected Objects website launch, Jun 8

8 June 2015

Inflected Objects, initiated by the Istituto Svizzero and curated by Melanie Bühler and Valerio Mannucci, launches its new website today, June 8.

Bühler, who was the driving force behind the insanely popular and now formally wrapped Lunch Bytes, joins Mannucci and the Italian foundation to launch a new project called Inflected Objects, comprised of online commissions and texts, as well as a series of exhibitions, the first of which was the inaugural Inflected Objects #1: Abstraction — Rising Automated Reasoning featuring Harm van den Dorpel and Katharina Fengler, along with four other artists.

This inaugural exhibition, which wraps up on June 13, comes as the first in a series of five dedicated to the “crumbling concept of the digital” and its effects on the production of art. In the press release, the project quotes architect and writer Keller Easterling and her notion that in the modern work, the digital has “escaped the box” and blended into the deep structures of society.

See the project website for details. **


NEWD Art Show @ The 1896, Jun 6 – 7

5 June 2015

NEWD Art Show is back for another round, taking over Brooklyn’s The 1896 this weekend.

The art show brings together a stacked list of local curatorial voices—including artist-run galleries, collectives, project spaces, and nonprofits—and some experimental programming, including talks focusing on modern economics of the art world.

This year’s exhibitors include, amongst others, a handful of galleries from Brooklyn, like American Medium, Signal, and Sardine,  as well as about 50 international artists, including Ann Hirsch, Jaimie Warren, Harm van den Dorpel, Hannah Lees, and Brian Khek.

See the NEWD website for details. **

unnamed (6)

Harm van den Dorpel @ Young Projects, Jan 23

21 January 2015

Artist Harm van den Dorpel is opening another solo show called Loomer, this time at West Hollywood’s Young Projects, running from January 23 and for “a month at least”, according to the artist.

The press release reads like a confession: “When writing texts for my own exhibitions, I used to pretend and write them in the third person: ‘the artist’, ‘Van den Dorpel’, ‘he’. An outsider perspective suggests neutrality, and protects me from explaining my own work.” He – this time it really isn’t him writing it – writes about his education (studied AI, graduated art school), his insecurity (“I still hesitate to call myself an artist…I prefer to say I’m a computer programmer”), his views on ‘post-internet’ (“I never minded the label, but know it is not sustainable”).

Nearing the end, his text veers into the poetic: “I’m leaning over, approaching too close, breathing over the edge of my own screen. Small drops of spit land on it. There is still a potentiality in the ‘new’, regardless how quickly it condensates into a ‘known’, which then slips through my fingers again.”

Meanwhile, the last few lines provide concrete information about the nature of the show, namely that it is “an array of formerly unmaterialized poster collages, presented in space with sculptures and animations, many of which span the past five years”.

See the Young Projects exhibition page for details. **