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participating artist



Mike Kelley: Kandor Con 2000, 1999/2005
Multimedia Installation
ca. 600 x 1500 x 1500 cm
Falckenberg Collection Hamburg
© Mike Kelley
Photo: ONUK

The following text is included in the press release accompanying the exhibition "MIKE KELLEY. KANDORS" [Jablonka Galerie Berlin, September 29 - December 22, 2007]. Copyright: Mike Kelley, Courtesy Jablonka Galerie Köln/Berlin

According to the Superman mythos is the fictional city of Kandor, the capitol of Superman's home planet Krypton the only remaining vestige of the exploded Krypton, and the city is preserved, in a reduced state, in a bottle in Superman's possession. Interestingly, the image of Kandor was never codified and the numerous representations of it in the comic book throughout the years vary widely in appearance. In this exhibition Kelley reconstructs ten unique versions of Kandor, with its enclosing bottle, which, despite obvious differences, purport to depict the same city. Thus, Kandor – as an eternally maintained, but constantly reconfigured, relic of Superman's childhood – is an apt symbol of Kelley's interests in the vagaries of memory, and relates to his own works that refer to Repressed Memory Syndrome, such as Educational Complex (1995), an architectural model made up of replicas of every educational institution that the artist ever attended, with the sections he cannot remember left blank. Such issues were foregrounded in an earlier work by Kelley that also focused on the theme of Kandor: Kandor-Con 2000, which was presented at the exhibition "Zeitwenden" at the Kunstmuseum Bonn in 2000.  


born 1954 in Detroit, Michigan
lives and works in Los Angeles


BFA University of Michigan

MFA, California Institute of the Arts, Valencia, CA

The University of Michigan School of Art and Design Distinguished Almnus Award

The California Institue of Arts Distinguished Almnus Award

John Simson Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship

Wolfgang Hahn Preis

Selected Exhibitions

Kandors, Jablonka Galerie, Berlin
Skulptur Projekte Münster 07, Münster
Collateral: When Art Looks Like Cinema.  Hangar Bicocca, Milano, Italien
Make Your Own Life:  Artist’s in and Out of  Cologne. Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia; Henry Art Gallery, University of Washington, Seattle; Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami

Profondeurs Vertes, Musée du Louvre, Paris

Goetz Meets Falckenberg. Sammlung Falckenberg Kulturstiftung Phoenix Art,  Hamburg
Day Is Done, Gagosian  Gallery, New York

Mike Kelley, Galerie Ghislaine Hussenot, Paris
Mike Kelley: The Uncanny.  Tate Liverpool, Liverpool, England.  Museum Moderner Kunst Stiftung Luwig Wien, Wien

Mike Kelley: Reversals, Recyclings, Completions, and Late  Additions. Metro Pictures, New York
Mike Kelley: Selected Works 1982-1990. Skarstedt Fine Art, New York