Summing up his own practice as "making nothing happen", Pavel Büchler is committed to the catalytic nature of art – its potential to draw attention to the obvious and reveal it as strange. Formally presented in a variety of media with a bias towards obsolete technology, his works often reference modern art, literature, critical thought – and on this occasion specifically the cinema. These references are never direct quotations, nor does the work rely solely on them. As observations on the conditions of culture and its inevitable dependence on the possibilities opened up by history, they try to offer new starting points from which imagination may proceed towards uncertain destinations.
The tiny drawing of the word l’imitation meticulously rendered in French pen to resemble print, for instance, is a misquotation of the English word "limitation", chanced upon while reading an essay on Marcel Broodthaers. The same source has also inspired the calligraphic reworking of the phrase "the impact of industrial production upon artistic practice", titled self-mockingly The Idea Crossed My Mind and I Set to Work at Once.
Pavel Büchler is a Czech-born, UK-based artist, influential teacher and occasional writer. Büchler belongs to a generation of artists directly influenced by the discoveries of 1970s conceptual art – or, as he insists, by the creative misunderstandings that conceptual art suffered in translation to the Eastern European cultural and political context. A new monograph on his work, Absentmindedwindowgazing, was published in Summer 2007 (Veenman Publishers, Rotterdam).
l’imitation 2008, ink on paper, 22 x 12 cm;
Hot Air (Projet pour un idée) 2007, slide projectors, screen, wooden stools, projected text and cigarette packet, dimensions variable;
The Idea Crossed My Mind and I set to Work at Once 2008, ink on paper, 76 x 55 cm;
Small Eclipse 2009, projector, meteorite, dimensions variable;
Bloom Stool 1973, reflex horn loudspeaker, wooden stool, tape recorder, dimensions variable;
Conversational Drawings 2008, 7 drawings on carbonless copy paper, 21.5 x 28 cm;
High Noon 2008, video loop on 10" studio monitor;
After Joseph Kosuth, after Douglas Huebler, after Lawrence Weiner ... , Artforum, Vol. 36, No. 3, 1997, page 16 2003-2009, watercolour on wall, dimensions variable;
I’ll Kill You 2009, sound loop;
Work (All the cigarette breaks, Tanya Leighton Gallery, Berlin, February 2009) 2009, photograph
Self-effacing Object 2008, Found and framed magazine, 21 x 29.7 cm