SQUAMA B-Sides at Print Gallery Tokyo
スクアマB面 プリントギャラリー

We are pleased to announce the exhibition 'Squama B-Sides' at Print Gallery Tokyo. Initiated by Maximilian Schachtner with the aim to create an collaborative and open-minded surrounding, he uses the universal concept of remixing and applies it to the realm of visual arts. For the exhibition 10 artists and designers from around the globe were invited to use the “official” Squama catalog as a prompt to create a new piece that combines trust, fandom, and the sensibilities of each unique practice. Additionally, the label’s catalog and specially produced merchandise are displayed and available for purchase.

Contributions by:
Marie Damageux, Colin Doerffler, Enji, Ju Young Kim, Moriz Oberberger, Public Possession, Hassan Rahim, Malin Schoenberg, Ben Schwartz, Jonas Wandeler

Since their inception in the 1880s, vinyl records have consisted of two sides, each with the ability to contain a piece of pre-recorded audio. It wasn’t until the 1960s that label executives made the distinction between each surface, naming one the “A-side” and the other the “B-side.” A-sides, as the name implies, took priority, and signaled to radio DJs that this song was the commercial single, while the content on the B-side was, for the most part, filler. Given this understanding, we might conclude that half of the music released during this time was considered forgettable. But categories and genres can be arbitrary, and often reductive. Maybe we can try to look at these terms a little differently. To cast something “a-side” is to make a separation, selecting one thing over another. Place two things “b-side” each other and it invokes partnership, collaboration, and community. Perhaps within this alternative framework we can begin to think about the Munich-based label Squama Recordings.

Founded in 2019 by producer Martin Brugger and creative director Maximilian Schachtner, Squama Recordings established, from the start, a clear dynamic: music and art together, side by side. Pulling from a roster of virtuosic artists, each Squama release often recombines, shuffles, and remixes any number of players in varying combinations, creating a unique and immersive sound that emerges from the simple idea of who is playing b-side who at any given moment. Encasing each release is the arresting packaging designed by Schachtner, who crafts distinct visual worlds through a range of tailored typographic, photographic, and production techniques. If there is one consistent detail, however, it’s that each sleeve is printed on the “wrong” side of a 2-sided paper, a subtle reminder of the label’s disregard for hierarchy.

Today, with streaming being the dominant audio format, A/B categories have become irrelevant. Despite this, artists persist with B-side releases as a way to indicate material unburdened by commercial constraints, consisting of alternates, demos, remixes, bootlegs, and rarities. It’s within this context that we can think of the exhibition Squama B-Sides at Print Gallery Tokyo. The works on display from 9 artists and designers from around the globe all use the “official” Squama catalog as a prompt to create a new piece that combines trust, fandom, and the sensibilities of each unique practice. To exhibit a label through the eyes of its own community upends the standard A/B dichotomy typically separating the realms of commercial and independent, normative and alternative, labor and love. It erases the boundary between Squama and its audience, inviting them into a creative ecosystem where all parts exist on an even plane—side by side.

Text by Ben Schwartz

Initiated by:
Maximilian Schachtner

Organized by:
Squama Recordings, Print Gallery Tokyo

Exhibition photography by:
Kai Tamaki

Open on:
Monday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday
Saturday, Sunday 13:30 to 20:00
Monday, Friday 15:30 to 20:00

Closed on:
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday

Opening Reception:
Saturday, May 11, 18:00–20:00

9-2, #113 Funamachi
Tokyo 160-0006

For the Squama B-Sides exhibition we produced a limited run of „cover version“ t-shirts which will be available at the gallery. Vintage shirts sourced in Tokyo were screen printed with the B-Sides visual to create one-off cover versions of their originals.
Supported by Mayumi Koji and Kawara Printmaking Laboratory

  • Marie Damageux

    Marie Damageux is a French-Beninese graphic designer who explores her cultural heritage through her creations. Questioning the role of transmission in her quest for identity, she practices an introspective and intuitive artistic approach. Her sensitive work encourages various forms of conversations imbued with diasporic experiences. Through the production of graphic objects, she explores the relationship between the public and the intimate, between history and History. She also co-founded the creative studio WIP Office alongside with Julie Bassinot. Working in the cultural field, they develop editorial and identity projects.

  • Colin Doerffler

    Colin Doerffler, a german-born creative director based in London, delves into progressive infrastructures across creative disciplines, developing bespoke conceptual frameworks and visual implementations for contemporary landscapes. He initiated the research program"Why Workshop" and is currently in the process of establishing a London-based HQ for creative exchange and collaborative inquiries.

  • Enji

    Born and raised in Ulaanbaatar, the capital city of Mongolia, Enji lived in a tiny yurt with a working-class family. “My parents worked every day, the whole day, for the city,” Enji says. “They love to sing, but they don’t have any passion for music. I was a bit different.” Ever supportive, her parents encouraged her to do whatever felt right for her, even if it meant eventually leaving Mongolia. “It was a great support from them.”

  • Yu Young Kim

    Ju Young Kim(1991*) is a South Korean artist based in Munich, Germany. Her artistic practice encompasses installations and objects using materials such as glass, ceramics, metal, plastic and transport modules, the components of transport systems of aircraft and cars, for example, as well as elements that include landscapes and anonymous objects. The visual aesthetic of her works is characterized by the precision of form, color ambiguity, and often surreal elements. In her conceptual explorations, expressed in past and current series, she examines the relativity of space and time from the perspective of a transcontinental traveler. She investigates transitional states expressed through transformations of various physical and symbolic attributes that mostly occur in the so-called“transit zones” of our lives.

  • Moriz Oberberger

    Moriz Oberberger is an Italian visual artist, illustrator and 2D animator based in Amsterdam. His illustrations and drawings are a poetic mix of vibrant colors, playful scenes, and lively characters, inviting viewers into whimsical worlds. Inspired by curiosity and the absurd, Moriz weaves imaginative stories. He nurtures his artistic vision through commissioned work and personal projects, showcasing his works in exhibitions and publishing books.

  • Public Possession

    Public Possession was founded in 2012 by Valentino Betz and Marvin Schuhmann as an outlet to channel their various interests. The idea was to emphasise the relationship between music, text, graphic design and happenings. This proccess being a continous stream, constantly evolving. The recordlabel and shop(physical & online) were added in 2013. Since then both give platform to various artists from around the globe. The effort of Public Possession is driven by the fun of creation and an urge to combine data – to create news. Its output is variable and includes commissioned work for clients from the field of culture and business as well as original work shown in various exhibitions and self organised events. Today Public Possession is a group of people, continuing with the above, having fun whilst trying to make things work.

  • Hassan Rahim

    Hassan Rahim(1987— ) is a creative director and high school dropout from Santa Ana, California, currently living and working in New York City. In opposition to culture’s obsession with speed, Rahim’s output remains guarded — incubating as long as necessary while he continues to build a body of work dealing with monomania, memory, and mortality. Hassan owns and operates anti-disciplinary creative studio 12:01.

  • Malin Schoenberg

    Malin Schoenberg, born in Ulm, raised by a swedish mother and an american father. From 2006 studies in Design and Sculpture at the University of Applied Arts, Vienna. While studying, she co-founded the publishing house Soybot. After graduating she moved to Munich to work with Bureau Borsche and Condé Nast. In 2015, she co-founded OFF Office. In 2018, she joined the design studio Daily Dialogue as a partner. Malin lives and works in Munich as a designer/artist and raises two kids with her partner.

  • Ben Schwartz

    Ben Schwartz(1988) is a graphic designer and editor based in New York City. He is currently working as a designer/editor for the online research platform Source Type and has collaborated with several graphic design studios in the cultural sector across a variety of media. Ben went to school at Art Center College of Design in Los Angeles, and was awarded a design fellowship position at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, MN. In 2020 he attended the Jan Van Eyck Academie in Maastricht, NL. He has been a visiting critic at Parsons, Yale, ArtEZ, and the Rietveld Academie. He recently published the book UNLICENSED: Bootlegging as a Creative Practice in 2023 with Source Type and Valiz.

  • Jonas Wandeler

    Jonas Wandeler is a graphic designer based in Zurich, Switzerland. He has recieved a BA in graphic design at the Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam and a MA in cultural publishing at the Zurich University of the Arts. As a founding member of Atlas Studio, he has established a collective practice with Claudio Gasser and Martin Andereggen since 2011. He was a visiting professor at écal(école cantonale d‘art de lausanne) from 2012 till 2022, has been giving workshops and holding lectures in art schools and institutions in and outside of Switzerland. In 2023 he initiated the book podcast«nicht nur schön» with curator Laura Breitschmid.

    • Squama B-Sides Tokyo Cap

      Low profile cap made from 100% organic cotton. Special produced for the Squama B-Sides exhibition at print gallery tokyo, May 11–June 9 2024.

      € 42