Alicja Kwade’s installation “Les Sièges des Mondes” was certainly one of the most enchanting, most popular, and in the most harmless way irritating, works at the last Art Basel art fair. These seats of the worlds were loosely distributed in a picturesque villa garden high above the Rhine, which testified to the solid prosperity of the city. Typical coffee house chairs carried the weight of large marble balls, certainly weighing several hundred kilos. You just had to know that the chairs weren’t made of wood, but of heavy bronze, in order to continue the so-called parcours comfortably irritated, but unencumbered by strenuous political or even just socially critical content in the most beautiful sunshine.

Summer is now two months on, people are groaning under the heat that comes with the sunshine, Berlin is not Basel – and Manon Awst is not Alicja Kwade. An air mattress hangs on the wall in the PSM gallery, with a flat screen on it (“Heuldro (solstice)”). The video features artist Manon Awst in various poses around a grassy mound of earth with an entrance. It is the Neolithic passage grave Bryn Celli Ddu on the Welsh island of Anglesey. Awst is Welsh and in the video wears a dress made from a stitched-in sleeping bag that has climbing holds on it. The dress “Fine Balance” hangs in the exhibition. The climbing holds can also be found on a mirror and a mirror screen. The climbing holds were 3D printed from recycled PET bottles and fishing nets. The gallery’s accompanying blurb states that the show aims to “explore the material dynamics of leisure and tourism.”

The objects that are apparently necessary for leisure and tourism seem to be made of plastic particularly often: air mattresses, water wings, plastic beach balls, the textile Lycra covers of cheap folding chairs. AWST’s “interest lies in the way these materials linger in the landscape long after the holidays, forming strange layers of infrastructure and meaning,” says the exhibition text. One can assume that the interest is also motivated by social criticism.

By the way, the exhibition is called “Stone’s throw”. Because the climate catastrophe is only a stone’s throw away? Stones, monoliths play an important role in Wales – and for the Welsh identity. You can find them everywhere there. They come in the form of stone circles, sometimes made of fiberglass, or as a logo on the artist’s elementary school sweater. They are also in the exhibition. One has a armband on (“sink or swim”). Another is stuck in a wing – exactly the opposite – just like a beach ball in a slightly larger one.

And an even larger stone lies on a lounge chair (“On the rocks”), stretching the green and white striped cover down to the floor. The feeling for statics is in no way irritated or even challenged. Nevertheless, one cannot help but think of the Art Basel “Parcours” and of Alicja Kwade. Manon Awst is not Alicja Kwade. But Alicja Kwade is one of the busiest art entrepreneurs around. You could see this for yourself recently in the Arte documentary “Is that art?” with her as the protagonist. She is represented by the extremely busy gallery owner Johann König.

PSM gallery owner Sabine Schmidt shows pictures of another work by Manon Awst: “Rock in chair”. A steel rocking chair supports a large uncut stone. Certainly, the work seems rawer than Kwade’s world seats in all their polished perfection. But this strange duplicity of the stone-on-chair idea is a bit striking. And it remains to be said that AWSt’s “Rock in chair” is dated to the past year and Kwade’s work to the current year.

According to Sabine Schmidt, Manon Awst deliberately strives for this somewhat rawer, rougher aesthetic in her new works. To set yourself apart. Manon Awst lives in Wales – now lives in Wales again. Previously she was part of the not exactly unsuccessful Berlin duo Awst

Some artist duos, like Elmgreen and Dragset, survive the private separation of their halves – others don’t. Benjamin Walther has completely withdrawn from art, says Sabine Schmidt. She already has AWS