Flyer artwork for my first solo exhibition COCKAIGNE at Westwerk Hamburg, Sep. 2017


Opening: Thursday 21 September 2017, 7 pm
From 9 pm, live performance by the art group Baby Of Control and dj-set by Felix Kubin

Exhibition: 22 September – 1 October 2017, Tue–Fri 5–8 pm,
Sat –Sun 3–7 pm

Link Westwerk
Link Baby Of Control

Futuristic scenarios, inhabited by fragments from the worlds of comics, technical drawing, Pop Art and Abstraction. Anthropomorphic elements swirling in a love dance, boring holes into each other, or floating aimlessly in a white space like still-lifes from a different world. Only tufts of hair or single bodily pieces testify to human existence.

Benedikt Rugar presents his first solo exhibition, Cockaigne
(or Schlaraffenland in German, a utopia of overflowing excess where everyday rules are turned on their head), with artworks created especially for Westwerk, including wall drawings and prints as well as video and animation. Welcome to the oozing paranoid world of excess, in the lake of pitch-black syrup.

Felix Kubin

Beam Club Mosaic Wall

I was asked to design a seven-meter long mosaic wall for the newly constructed Beam club in Thailand. Comprising a lounge and main dance floor, Beam is situated in Bangkok’s Thonglor district and is part of 72 Courtyard, a complex of restaurants and cafes designed by architect Amanda Levete. The interior design concept was by William Russell of Pentagram.

The wall lies behind the bar in the lounge, a quieter area of the club, so the owner wanted the illustration to have a dreamlike feel about it, inviting guests to linger in the space. My immediate reference were vintage illustrations from the 1960s, where families gather in front of futuristic buildings, a representation of every day life scenarios but in an imposing environment. These were the raw materials with which to create a window into a fictional landscape.

Instead of a conventional rendering, we decided to solve this challenge by creating a huge mosaic wall (7 m L x 3 m H), in tune with the materials used throughout. The artwork – which I had to “translate” into the language of mosaics – is actually made up of hundreds of 1 x 1 cm pixels: the black or white tiles on the wall. The technique allowed for matt and glossy finishes, which used in combination allowed me to introduce highlights (eg the bouncing black balls).

Photos by Matias Sauter