Okey-Dokey, the new cooperative gallery project to launch in Cologne & Dusseldorf
In 2016 a group of galleries launched Condo, a novel initiative in which local spaces hosted incoming galleries, creating a sort of anti art fair where exhibitors incurred minimal costs and the city was flooded with art from across the globe.
However, Condo was preceded by Köln Show — a collaborative exhibition taking place in 1990 organized by nine galleries without institutional help. The latter is a key point of reference for Okey-Dokey, a new initiative organized by three Cologne and Dusseldorf-based galleries Max Meyer, Ginevra Gambino Gallery and Jan Kaps, who announced the project last week.
Billed as “a joint exhibition project of galleries and exhibition spaces in Cologne and Dusseldorf with international colleagues,” Okey-Dokey, named after Konrad Fisher’s infamous catch phrase, is to take place from September 9 through 30. The event will occur across nine spaces, each of which will host a curated group show featuring the work of artists from incoming galleries.
The principle propelling the project is “the idea of collaborating on an actual show, to share thoughts and content, as well as the idea of taking the visitor back to the actual gallery space,” say the organizers. “Everyone involved regularly shares their experiences, opinions and works together in one way or another. One side of "Okey Dokey" is to make these relationships visible and to expand them.”
“I think to hook up on international relationships by inviting friends to show here during the annual season opening is beneficial for everyone involved in the project,” says Dennis Hochköppeler of Drei gallery in Cologne. “We’re also hoping to raise awareness of the art centres in Rhineland.” Drei have invited Lulu from Mexico City, Kirchgasse from Steckborn and Park View from Los Angeles. The exhibition will feature artists Maximiliane Baumgartner, Lin Mae Saeed, Autumn Ramsey, Peter Young, Aidan Koch, Mark A. Rodriguez, Cédric Eisenring and Anna Virnich.
Jan Kaps of his eponymous gallery notes the range among participants: Misako & Rosen from Tokyo — hosted by Max Mayer — will celebrate their tenth anniversary this month, while Sax Publishers from Vienna — invited by Kaps — have been operating since just 2014. “The group of hosts in Cologne and Düsseldorf formed quite organically. The same goes for the invited guests,” note the organizers. “It’s quite an honor to welcome so many galleries and spaces with such a unique programming,” they add.