After ten years in Brunnenstraße 9, KOW moves to new premises in Lindenstraße 35 between the Jewish Museum and Springer Verlag. The first exhibition of the gallery took place in 2009 with Franz Erhard Walther. He also opens the new venue, this time in tandem with the American artists Clegg & Guttmann. What connects the three men is decades of thinking about the rules of the game of living together in modern societies. What distinguishes them is the respective artistic shaping and distortion of these rules, which begins in Walther's work in the late 1950s and is based on his experiences of the postwar period, while Clegg & Guttmann have followed an analytic approach since the early 1980s, based on poststructuralist sociology and specific historical motives.
The works of Franz Erhard Walther and of Clegg & Guttmann show unexpected parallels, they draw critical attention to what one might call the pitfalls of participatory culture: real and only apparent freedom of movement, factual or merely perceived barriers in the subject's marathon on the way to the democratic promise of self-development within the norms of an institutionalised community. Who likes the word and the idea of participation - in the exhibition, one can study with some amusement how this political concept is celebrated, deformed and perforated.