CHOI&LAGER is pleased to present a ANDERE ZEIT, irgendwann (DIFFERENT TIMES, at some point), with David Lehmann, Sebastian Gögel and Henriette Grahnert. The exhibition has a specific focus on a generation of artists who were born and are living and working in former East Germany.
The artists were born out of a generation of Eastern German masters, like Gerhard Richter and Sigmar Polke, who in their 1966 exhibition marked the beginning and foundation of the artists' 'Capitalist Realism' period, an ironic twist on the Socialist Realism. Both Ritchter and Polke grew up in what was East Germany, this more recent generation of artists, presented in ANDERE ZEIT, irgendwann, question the present market economy, not in an ironic way but with a shared melancholic feeling. For Richter and Polke construction of the 'Mauer', 'the wall', was a defining moment in their lives, yet for Lehmann, Gögel and Grahnert it was the 'Wende', 'the change', from socialist to market economy that is remembered as a traumatic moment.
David Lehmann works deal with a wide range of themes and motifs, often with a humorous trait. He mixes his engagement with modern and current social processes and his interest in history and mythology. In this way, his works form a timeless personality through his creative power and diversity he takes on new forms again and again. The flesh-like character of Sebastian Gögel's imagery is both shocking and hypnotic. His bizarre visual worlds radiate unease and anxiety. By distorting the almost human figures, amorphous beings and objects are created that confirm these feelings. Decorated with a cheerful note, Henriette Grahnert's works lead an artistic examination of painting. This is illustrated by various painting techniques and levels of abstraction. Grahnerts reveals an unmistakable sense of humour. With direct allusions to art history–including, for example, Picasso's portraits or the importance of primary colours–he links her personal creativity with that of the artist figure. Lehmann, Gögel and Grahnert may differ in their artistic approach, but they coincide in their concept of contemporary German painting and the simultaneous examination of art, art history. Their shared upbringing in the state that was East Germany; Berlin, Leipzig and Dresden, the artist focus on the artistic network that has solidified over many years and the unique own language that revealed itself, based on their unmistakable past and its legacy which evolved.
Together these artists shared their participation in the exhibition Jetzt! Junge Malerei in Deutschland, which took place first in the Kunstmuseum Bonn, later the Museum Wiesbaden, the Chemnitz Museum Grunzenhauser and finally the Deichtorhallen Hamburg.
The exhibition will take place during the Art Cologne & Cologne Fine Art (14–18 April, 2021).
Press release courtesy Choi&Lager Gallery.