Kate Davis
14 September – 17 November 2013


In her first solo show in Germany, Kate Davis engages in early childhood play and its value change. In the one hand, her artistic research weaves together the learning approaches of the reformist educators Friedrich Froebel and Maria Montessori with their emphasis on tactile experience and their differing views on the structuring of play. On the other hand, Davis became aware of the strange collection of makeshift dolls by London folklorist Edward Lovetts’ (1852-1933) which dolls were made by British working class children around 1900 using the most basic available materials. These sources, amongst others, are used by the artist to examine the ubiquitous digital technologies and seemingly abstract economic systems that shape much of contemporary life from a feminist point of view. This exhibition asks us to reconsider (and perhaps articulate anew) the use value of certain objects that have become redundant or obsolete. "Toy is hand tool - not artwork" wrote Walter Benjamin, himself a collector of toys. In "Eight Blocks Or A Field" feminist economics is employed as a ‘hand tool’ by Davis to question our systems of value and hierarchies of play.

Curator: Regina Barunke


Kate Davis. Eight Blocks Or a Field
Artist book
Edited by the artist and Temporary Gallery, Cologne
Texts by Regina Barunke, Abraham Cruzvillegas
Design by James Brook
English / German (insert)


16 November 2013
Kate Davis: Eight Blocks Or A Field



Funding and Support

Kunststiftung NRW
Creative Scotland
Goethe-Institut Deutschland
Kulturamt der Stadt Köln
RheinEnergie Stiftung Kultur
Deltax contemporary, Wirtschafts- und Steuerberatungsgesellschaft mbH
Hotel Chelsea


Opekta Ateliers


1 — Kate Davis: Eight Blocks or a Field (Poster), 2013
2 — exhibition view
3 — Kate Davis: Personal Care Frame (Yarn Balls), 2013, Fourteenth Gift (Undone Red), 2013
4 — Kate Davis: Personal Care Frame (Jumper), 2013, Fourteenth Gift (Undone Cyan), 2013
5 — Kate Davis: Denkmal, 2013
Photo: Simon Vogel