average poems sound best at midnight

An exhibition by Nina Rieben

Opening: 08.03.2024 at 19:00
Kaiserwache, Kaiser-Joseph-Straße 286, 79098 Freiburg im Breisgau

In the process of self-reflection, an unexpected irony emerges: the night becomes the brightest time of day for indulging in poetry of average quality. This notion that “average poems sound best at midnight” reveals layers of ambiguity, where emotions teeter between pathos and allure, and the bewitching hour becomes a transformative threshold. It’s a moment where boundaries blur, allowing for uninhibited expressions that transcend concerns of embarrassment and correctness, giving voice to emotions that resist definition. However, as soon as the clock strikes one, these poignant expressions, once so crystal clear, fade into the spaces between lines.
As is often the case with poetry, its translation into other languages presents significant challenges, sometimes resulting in paradoxical outcomes. Similarly, Rieben’s artworks in this exhibition defy straightforward interpretation, adding layers of complexity to the process of translating their idiomatic language into clear explanations.
Words and textual fragments, whether they take the form of titles or are integrated into the artworks themselves, seem to hint at stories, albeit in fragmented and rhetorical ways, often laced with subtle irony. It’s as if they’re reluctant to linger too long in the space, reserving the urgent right of being swiftly retracted.
Taken together, Rieben’s collection of works in the exhibition highlights the themes of uncertainty, doubt, and even misunderstanding as essential qualities that challenge the conventional realities we generally agree upon and hold dear.