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Björn Dahlem, Sonnen (Suns), 2011, glass, wood, Styrofoam, steel, lemon, velvet ball, lacquer, shellac, 27 1/2 x 59 x 19 5/8".

Björn Dahlem

Galerie Rüdiger Schöttle

Björn Dahlem, Sonnen (Suns), 2011, glass, wood, Styrofoam, steel, lemon, velvet ball, lacquer, shellac, 27 1/2 x 59 x 19 5/8".

“Artistic research” has become a buzzword—as if art could imitate or incorporate methods of the natural and social sciences and the humanities. The scholarly, intellectually conscientious artist seems to be the new ideal, not least because it is easier to gain support for training and resources from academic establishments when artistic production is couched in terms of research. Yet many artists resist such labels and interpretations of their work. Björn Dahlem’s works, for instance, are undeniably involved with physics, astronomy, and philosophy, yet he nonetheless shuns the overly positivistic paradigm of the researching artist—without, however, falling into long-outdated stereotypes or backward ideologies.

Dahlem’s recent exhibition “Voyager” was something of a follow-up to his 2010 show “Die Theorie des Himmels I—Die Milchstraße” (Celestial Theory I —The

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