AK 9

Burned Remains of AK 9
Video Loop, HD (14:25 min)

Projection Screen: 3.2m x 1.8m x 0.1m
16 panels (burned objects cast in Polyester Resin)
16 Sound Transducer Speakers

2 Seats (burned objects cast in Polyester Resin)
Seat Dimensions: 65cm x 50cm x 35cm

Damage & Loss | Alternativa 2016
24.06. - 15.09.2016
Hall 90B | Former Gdansk Shipyard | Poland


Ancien hôtel

Ancien hôtel

In November 2015 I stayed for a couple of days at ‘Ancien hôtel’, just below the Maginot line, in the last inhabited village on the highest road of Europe in the French Alps. In exchange I made this video to advertise ‘Ancien hôtel’ on the Internet.

"The fact that there was so much lawlessness in the way you had to deal with things just really allowed you to build what you wanted.

You really had much more control over your life than most people have!"

André Chapatte
Amsterdam, NL / March 2015
"I had to get away from the the over-regulated area of town. There is no space for me anymore. It became too normal - too bourgeois.

[ ... ]

You do not have to have a 9-5 job, living in a concrete box, standing in city traffic every morning.

There are still choices in life! You do not have to do that. It can be done differently!”

Paul Kuper
Amsterdam, NL / March 2015
"For me it was more about becoming more autonomous.
I mean, there actually is a lot of comfort in a certain amount of self-sufficiency, for example having to chop wood to keep the place warm during the winter instead of having to have a contract with an energy supplier.

And we still had Internet and Facebook! We were never cut off!"

Daniel Dressel
Amsterdam, NL / May 2015

In January 2012 AK9, an artist run studio space in Amsterdam, burned to the ground. Thick black smoke caused traffic jams on nearby highways, airplanes approaching the city airport had to take alternative routes and the event was covered by several newspapers and TV channels: Surreal indeed, like an act of war that happened somewhere else.

Everybody got out just in time.

The reason for the blaze was never found and the ground that once belonged to AK9 has been taken over by a neighbouring company. AK9 neither was insured, nor legally protected in any other way.

It disappeared with everything in it.

The only failsafe for the victims was a network of people supporting each other.

* * *

As an installation AK9 is composed of fragments that contain everything that is left of the space. AK9 now exists as a ‘mobile site’: an embodied presence that resonates with its former existence.

16 individual panels, assempled as a projection screen (180cm x 320cm x 10xm), and two seats (65cm x 50cm x 35cm) are cast in resin. They are made from destroyed burned objects, which were collected on site before the rest went into a landfill. It is an architectural space, reconfigured and reshaped, made to show an edited version of a digital archive of damaged clips that were shot inside AK9 before it disappeared.

The Video Loop (14:25 min) appears damaged and incoherent, full of colourful glitches and digital fragments. All video clips were recovered from a broken hard disk. Bits and pieces of conversations between former residents add a layer of living memory.

At the same time the projection screen emits the sound of the video via 16 sound transducers, speakers that work with the vibration of the material they are attached to instead of relying on speaker membranes. It fills the surrounding space with its sound.

ghost |gəʊst| - a slight trace or vestige of something
site |sʌɪt| - a place where a particular event or activity is occurring or has occurred


The search for new encounters, complicities and alliances describes an attitude which foregrounds an artistic practice that is not defined or limited by a specific medium. It can be seen as a negotiation perhaps, or a spark that interferes with the structure of the world and that in turn allows others to interact with its complexities and its contradictions - an interplay of action, reaction and reflection.

To take a stance in the world means to get involved on a personal level, as Georges Didi-Huberman wrote in 2009, in an essay on Harun Farocki’s work: “Lifting one’s thought to the level of anger (the anger provoked by all the violence in the world, this violence to which we refuse to be condemned). Lifting one’s anger to the level of a task (the task of denouncing this violence with as much calm and intelligence as possible).” (How to Open Your Eyes (Harun Farocki: Against What? Against Whom?), edited by Antje Ehmann and Kodwo Eshun (Koenig Books & Raven Row, London, 2009), p.39).

That way indignation becomes a driving force.

I was born in 1985. My two brothers and me grew up on the German country side next to the Czech border. Hof, the biggest town in the area, used to be the last train stop before the Iron Curtain. After high school I went to India to do a Voluntary Social Year, during which I worked with mentally disabled people.

When I decided to come to London to do a Master at Goldsmiths University, I soon realized that it was almost impossible for me to afford the rent, the fees, the cost of living and to focus on my studies at the same time without making debts. I had to find an alternative, a coping strategy, a way to enter the city. My solution was to buy a cheap old van in Germany. I restored it and I converted it into a mobile live/work studio. In August 2014, I drove it to London. With the help of friends I discovered Cody Dock in the London Borough of Newham, where I could safely park.

Officially I am Cody Dock’s first artist in residence. 

In my experience, if the system is too rigid to be broken, the only viable option is to find gaps that can be exploited. For example I had to ensure that my van was affordable but still met London’s Low Emission Standards to avoid excessive fines. Generally speaking: one needs to know the rules first in order to navigate them. Yet perhaps even more important than knowing those rules is a network of allies and friends.

solo exhibitions

26. May - 04. June 2017 // 'POLYGON' (Cody Dock, London, UK)

group exhibitions

15. September - 27. October 2017 // 'Future Refrains' (Peer Sessions, ASC, London, UK)
23. September 2017 // 'Collaboration in Question' (Peer Sessions, ASC, London, UK)
19. April 2017 // 'Peer Session #76: Jason Jones and Daniel Dressel' (Peer Sessions, Deptford X, London, UK)
24. June - 15. September 2016 // 'Damage & Loss' (Alternativa, Gdansk, Poland)
14. - 18. July 2016 // 'MFA Goldsmiths Show' (Goldsmiths University, London, UK)
14. May 2016 // 'Die Yuppie Hipster Artist Scum' (No.w.here, London, UK)
25. January - 08. February 2016 // 'Between the Lines' (GRAD, London, UK)
23. April - 19. June 2015 // 'Collaborate!' (Oriel Sycharth Gallery, Wrexham, UK)
12. - 26. October 2013 // 'Anthropozänta' (Helmbrechts, Germany)
03. - 09. July 2013 // GRA Graduation Show (Gerrit Rietveld Academie, Frederik Roeskestraat 96, Amsterdam)
16. - 24. November 2012 // 'Ultimate Harmony': HARD.CORE (Upominki, Kapelstraat 32, Rotterdam)
01. - 15. September 2012 // 'Žinkovy Arts Festival': HARD.CORE (Žinkovy, West Bohemia, Czech Republic)
12. - 13. June 2012 // 'Unfamiliar Parcours' (Holland Festival / Frascati Theatre, Amsterdam)
08. - 16. June 2012 // 'Hardcore / Ding-mon-seek': HARD.CORE (Amstel 41, Amsterdam)
31. March 2012 // 'Creating a Context' (Front of House, Bologna, Italy)
16. October 2011 // 'Learning to Sea': HARD.CORE (Retort Art Space, Amsterdam)
15. - 17. April 2011 // 'Open Ateliers Zeeburg' (Amsterdam)
09. April 2011 // 'About Blank Spaces': Daniel Dressel & Anne de Boer ('Slow Lloyd' / Lloyd Hotel, Amsterdam)
17. February 2011 // 'Chief Noise' (Oude Diamantslijperij / Tolstraat 129, Amsterdam)
22. April 2010 // 'Call & Response' (Gallery Schijnheilig, Amsterdam)


April 2015 // 'Arte + Ecología' (Cortijada Los Gázquez / Andalucía, Spain)
March 2012 // 'Creating a Context' (in collaboration with Nosadella.Due and Neon Gallery / Bologna / Italy)
February 2012 // 'Swedish Connection' (Aspnäs, Härnösand / Sweden)
September - October 2011 // 'About the Relationship between Chaos and Silence' (Kolkata / West Bengal, India)
November 2010 - January 2011 // 'Slow Lloyd' (organised by slowLab / Lloyd Hotel, Amsterdam)

commissions / grants / awards

2015 // 'ICA Moscow / MFA Goldsmiths Exchange Programme' (supported by Moscow Biennale Foundation and the Tsukanov Family Foundation)
2014 - 2015 // 'DAAD Scholarship' (Fine Arts, Design & Film / Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst)
2013 // 'For Sylvanus': A memorial for Sylvanus Tutu Donkor (commissioned by Gerrit Rietveld Academie)

Creative Commons: LogoCreative Commons license: AttributionCreative Commons license: NoncommercialCreative Commons license: No Derivative Works
15.09. - 27.10.2017

Future Refrains
ASC Gallery

private view: 15.09. | 6 p.m. - 9 p.m.
exhibition: 18.09. - 27.10.2017

The Chaplin Centre
Taplow House, Thurlow Street
London SE17 2DG



Collaboration in Question
A Peer Sessions Project at ASC Gallery
ASC Gallery / 1 p.m. - 5.30 p.m.

The Chaplin Centre
Taplow House, Thurlow Street
London SE17 2DG


26.05. - 04.06.2017

Peer Session #76

private view: 25.05. | 6 p.m.
exhibition: 26.05. - 04.06.2017

11c South Crescent
London E16 4TL


19 APRIL 2017

Peer Session #76
A Peer Sessions Project
Deptford X / 7 p.m. - 10 p.m.

Ground Floor, Norfolk House
9 Brookmill Road
London SE8 4HL


24.06. - 15.09.2016

Alternativa 2016

opening: 24.06.2016 | 6 p.m.
exhibition: 24.06. - 15.09.2016
organizers: Alternativa Foundation & National Museum Gdansk

Former premise of Gdansk Shipyard | Hall 90B

14.07. - 18.07.2016

MFA Goldsmiths Graduation Show 2016
Goldsmiths University of London

opening: 14.07.2016 | 6 p.m.
exhibition: 15.07. - 18.07.2016

Ben Pimlott Building, Laurie Grove Baths & Richard Hoggart Building
New Cross, Goldsmiths University of London
London SE14 6NW


14 MAY 2016

Die Artist Scum
No.w.here / 1 p.m. - 6 p.m.

316 - 318 Bethnal Green Road
London E2 0AG



Between the Lines GRAD:
Gallery for Russian Arts and Design

private view: 26.01.2016 | 6 p.m.
exhibition: 27.01. - 08.02.2016

3-4a Little Portland Street
London W1W 7JB



n.    +44 (0) 7917 953 264
e.    mail@danieldressel.com

11c South Crescent / Cody Dock
London, E16 4TL
United Kingdom