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Back To The Future



Carolin Kropff

Curated by Larissa Kolesnikova

Back to The Future is the exhibition of paintings by Carolin Kropff curated by Larissa Kolesnikova to honor their first show together - Fatamorgana ( 2011), which took place at the XVA gallery in Dubai. Both the Artist and the Curator lived in the Emirate during a period of significant growth and have witnessed the rise and fall of a few architectural landscapes, such as Palm Jebel Ali, The Word, and the Desert Gate. 


Welcome to 2023. Gone are the days of the Desert Gate...

The Bawadi road looks very different now compared to 2007 when it was populated by the Desert Gate  - dream, stage-like structures, placeholders of future hotels that now are stored in our shared memory of Dubai. City at the moment of its rapid construction and creation of its wildest dreams, documented by the artist through a series of paintings. Driving through the area today, we see endless apartment buildings, bleak commercial centers, and residential villas that serve the working population of the city. These infrastructure necessities are very far removed from the original 2007 Desert Gate wild dream.


Walking into the exhibition space at STUDIOSPACE Lange Strasse 31, Desert Gate 3 and 4 face each other in the narrow hall. 2.10 meter tall, twin brothers-like, dressed in blue and orange vibrant unearthly pigment, these grand canvases stand opposite each other in silence, a play of fiction and reality, taking us Back to the Future of Dubai.

Larissa Kolensikova is an independent curator and a founder of Locally Global Art. She is based in L.A.

Carolin Kropff's artistic work explores the relevance of cultural and collective invention and craft-making methods. Her interest lies in exploring the commonalities between inventing and creating visual pictures and storytelling, and in giving expression to the inherent possibilities of communication, collaboration, and belonging to each other and to time.

In 2020, she founded STUDIOSPACE Lange Straße 31 in Frankfurt am Main. From 2006 - 2011 she had a studio in Dubai, United Arab Emirates and from 1999 - 2002 one in Madrid, Spain. She studied at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf (1991-1995) and graduated at the Städelschule Frankfurt (1996 -1998).

She lives and works in Frankfurt am Main.

Kindly supported by Kulturamt Frankfurt.

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