Plato and other smart minds after him established: “Wonder is the beginning of insight.” In Wolfgang Kowar’s cabinet of wonders we find many an amazing object. Be it the surprising mechanism of a “Useless Box,” be it a well-preserved specimen of the “new human” under a glass cover, or something else altogether.
When looking at these wondrous exhibits it becomes increasingly clear: the mental concepts and thought figures here are not only being presented, but perhaps being turned upside down, inside out, or boiled down to an absurd essence.
The widespread habit of quickly ignoring things that amaze us hinders contemplation. Kowar’s showpieces balk at this and in this way perhaps ignite the spark of insight.
With this collection, Wolfgang Kowar ties in with a long tradition: Beginning in the 14th century, in their “cabinets of art and wonders” the wealthy and powerful collected unicorn horns, game machines, exotic precious objects, whatever seemed to arouse marvel or amazement, for the purpose of depicting the “universal coherence of things.” One may inquire into how far we have come in this cabinet of wonder and insight at j3fm.
Kowar’s cabinet has two stories: the bright ground floor of everyday reason leads to the basement of superstition.
However—are these really opposites?
Wolfgang Kowar lives and works in Burgdorf. The last time he exhibited at j3fm, it was his “Enschichtungen” (destratifications) of advertising columns. He presents his work throughout Germany and abroad.