Yutie Lee – Ekstase 123 @ Kunstverein Göttingen



Pictures by Marius Land

Yutie Lee’s multidisciplinary practice combines stories and references to pop culture with literature, history and her own biography. In her first institutional solo show at the Kunstverein Göttingen, Lee deals with the invention and coding of language and emotions. The exhibition’s title “Ekstase 123” addresses exactly those states of consciousness and areas of our communication, which are distinguished by their untranslatability.

For this exhibition, Lee combines fictional and historical strands of three iconic female figures, which have worked in very different ways to the topic of coding: The author Ingeborg Bachmann (1926-1973) in her dream notations from 1962 to 1966, analyzing the linguistic indivisibility of pain; the actress Hedy Lamarr (1914-2000) with her invention of an encoded radio control system, which is now used in bluetooth devices; and the abbess, polymath, composer and mystic Hildegard von Bingen (1098-1179), who developed her own alphabet and language.

The stories by, and about these three characters – Bachmann, Lamarr, von Bingen – combine the phenomenon of an intoxicated condition – from the visions of Hildegard von Bingen to the female orgasm played by Lamarr in a movie from 1933, up unto the ecstatic infatuation of Bachmann’s figure Elisabeth in the story “Drei Wege zum See”. Yutie Lee picks up on these historically disparate stories and transfers them into a coherent image- and form language.

A publication based on the so-called “litterae ignotae” serves as the core to the exhibition. It refers to Hildegard von Bingen’s 23 letters of a secret and invented alphabet from which Yutie Lee has created a digital font variant: “HvB”, expanded on by ten stylistically modified Chinese symbols for numbers. This typography acts as the foundation for the artist publication which will be published by Edition Taube (https://www.editiontaube.de/).

Yutie Lee (*1988, Taipei, Taiwan) lives and works in Munich and Taipei. In 2015 she finished her studies at the Academy of Fine Arts Munich as ‘master student’ of Prof. Nicolai. Her work has been included in group shows at Dreiviertel, Bern, CH; Kunstverein Munich, DE; Künstlerhaus Palais Thurn und Taxis, Bregenz, AT; Künstlerhaus, Halle für Kunst & Medien, Graz, AT; Galerie der Künstler, Munich, DE and at the ZKM, Karlsruhe, DE.

Tomke Braun