FischGratenMelkStand

The Berlin art exhibition, curated by John Bock, features Matthew Burbridge's 'Backstage', a mocked up version of an artist's squat

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FischGratenMelkStand translates to 'herringbone milking parlor', and even then it doesn't make sense. It sounds like a new internet meme, or the last dream of a scientist gone mad. And actually, that's just what this harebrained art show, the final project at Berlin's Temporare Kunsthalle, might be.
 
FGMS is curated by John Bock, a Berlin artist whose medium tends to be the message, albeit a highly scrambled one. Here he's installed eleven metres of Jenga-like scaffolding, which might explain the 'herringbone' bit at least, but makes most of the seventy-odd artworks caught up in it look accidental or unfinished. Is there a better expression of Berlin, a city wholeheartedly in progress? And it's fun, as art has all but forgotten how to be. There is no right way: you can climb up and down, get lost, sit among tangled wires that electrify junk, and duck through a hole in the wall separating complex architectural models from a nonsensical installation involving six-foot hair extensions. There is not a single "please do not touch" sign. Or a "no photos" rule. It's a totally bizarre inversion of the art world order.
 
The best is saved for last - or first, however you choose to start your adventure, in Matthew Burbridge's 'Backstage'. Burbridge (born to England, lives in Berlin) has wildly imagined - and painstakingly realised - an artist's squat in all this flux. A perfect chaos replete with spilled paint, piles of cheap empty cigarette packs, and experimental works that may or may not be real, it both roasts and toasts the myth of the 'creative process'. It's funny, too, because even as you're marvelling at the sheer disastrousness, you realise you are being extraordinarily careful not to mess it up. You do not touch. And that, you think, must make it art...
 
Temporäre Kunsthalle Berlin is located at Schloßplatz 1, and FischGratenMelkStand runs through August 31
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