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THIS IS NOT A DRILL

Florian Artmann helps with emergency care @ VICIS 2018

The Berlin crisis was just over and the one around Cuba was imminent, as in the summer of 1962 Campbell's Soup Cans, Andy Warhol’s first work on this subject was shown in Los Angeles for the first time. Over many years he has repeatedly edited it in several phases and it was not only a kind of trademark of the world’s most famous pop art artist, but the can design of the soup manufacturer from Camden, NJ, that—probably for this very reason—remains almost unchanged until today, became part of our collective art memory.

The crises of our time take place in other regions, but are no less dangerous, which just recently became very clear once again at the Munich Security Conference. Therefore, it can only seem logical to heed the advice of the German Federal Office for Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Assistance. It recommends the stockpiling of food including, of course, the all-time classic – the good old canned soup. At the same time, however, leaving us with a certain amount of leeway, artistic freedom so to speak, when the agency states "Take your personal preferences into consideration (..)" Well, of course we do have some—it should look good!

Florian Artmann is here to help. The brand-new draft for a can shelf of the Munich-based furniture designer combines a classic reduced framework with a simple yet very sophisticated technical system for replenishing. Unlike cockroaches (and possibly Keith Richards), it is unlikely to survive a nuclear war, but it looks much better until its outbreak. Of course, there is also the far-reaching possibility of customization according to taste—in a double sense. It can be made into a three-dimensional piece of pop-art for the living room, but it may also be used to simply store Baked Beans (very British), Sauerkraut (very German) or slices of pineapple (muito brasileiro). And so, the pessimistic view on the world is relativized by the fact that until the arrival of any hazardous emergency, the fine arts are being celebrated.

Part of the exhibition VICIS // ALWAYS CHANGE A RUNNING SYSTEM | March 3—11, 2018 | Architekturgalerie München im BUNKER | mcbw.