PRINT November 1996


Kai Althoff

EARLY 1996 AT the Galerie Daniel Buchholz: Kai Althoff sits on a mattress, stripped to the waist, and smokes. On a turntable spins his as-yet-unreleased disk predating his founding of the band Workshop, one of the leading electronic/dance-music groups in Germany today. With its excessively monotonous and unrelated patterns within a limited range of timbres, the music sounds like an experimental adaptation of Can, Cologne’s most important contribution to music since Stockhausen. Althoff’s chest is painted in eccentric violets, browns, and reds, the colors of wild berries, as are two candles in the background. In the foreground lies the album cover of the record he presents without uttering a sound. Done up in the same Hawaiian-Punch tones, its felt-marker illustrations show scenes of political, social, and sexual liberation, but in a glamorously fashionable style, a bit like Heinz Edelmann’s

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