Gregor Gleiwitz's (b. 1977, based in Berlin, Germany) large-scale paintings and his very precisely elaborated miniatures present an imagery between abstraction and almost figurative levels of meaning. Vibrant colour fields are ruptured by scratched, scraped, and painted surfaces as well as wild serpentine curves. The static effect of the soft, warm aura of the colours, defies the movement and mobility of the contours. The glazes are of varying thicknesses, and in some parts, their thinnest layers remind us of erased information and blurred memories, thus making a chronology visible. The titles of Gleiwitz's works depend on the date of their completion. Being created in intensive, continuous processes, his paintings reflect experiences of time, capturing a piece of reality.
'They are about expanding small experience.'
Katharina Grosse (b. 1959) brings three-dimensional space into painting. She masters optical layering through colour compositions and a sharp use of light. The artist manages to give the two-dimensional painting her remarkable expression, making it appear larger.
'I let the image go two steps further before I intervene again.'
The real space becomes part of the pictorial space in Bettina Marx's paintings. In her ink drawings the artist captures real places and experienced situations. She transfers silhouettes, surfaces and textures like set pieces into paintings, reminiscent of natural structures. Painted walls and sheets of paper transform the exhibition space and create seemingly organic environments.
'As an artist, I gotta stand up to my own work.'
Inspired by his chosen home, Los Angeles, and the American Commercial Society, the works of the artist Ed Ruscha (b. 16. Dezember 1937 in Omaha) show his view on the Western attitude. Whether paintings, photographs, drawings or prints, Ruscha's style is both ironic and mysterious. As a representative of Pop Art, he successfully captivates the viewer by introducing enigmatic sentence components and drawing the attention to America´s post-war idealism.
'Painting can go much further than anyone can imagine. Primitive people believed they were magicians when they were making art. We believe we are making art, when we are actually using powerful magic strengths. This magic is rhythm first, because rhythm generates breath and life. Rhythm creates forms and gives dance and painting this sacred dimension...'
The autodidact Jean-Michel Atlan (b. 1913 in Constantine, Algerien; † 1960 in Paris) was in his lifetime one of the most influential and connected artist of the Nouvelle École de Paris and his generation. After the painful experiences during the German occupation of Paris he developed his very unique painting style allowing him to achieve a great power of poetic and pictorial expression.
Kwang Young Chun
'This became an important milestone in my long artistic journey that desired to express the troubles of the modern man who is driven to a devastated life by materialism, endless competition, conflicts and destruction,' writes Chun. 'After almost twenty years, I was now able to communicate with my own gesture and words.'
Paper is his element. Kwang Young Chun (b. 1944) inspires the viewer with his installations and works made of different paper structures. The Korean artist wraps and cuts the inscribed paper pieces, achieving a resemblance to three-dimensional sculpture works.
Ernst Wilhelm Nay
'The picture must have figure. Figure is a matter of invention, invented shape of the surface. Inventing figure is the freedom of the artist, enjoying it is the freedom of the viewer.'
Taking the human being as his muse, Ernst Wilhelm Nay (b. 11. Juni 1902 Berlin, † 08. April 1968) influenced the art world with his abstract colour compositions. Through a wide-range use of colour and its mere application, Nay created works that freed themselves from pure expressionism and set an individual focus on their non-representational nature.
'Art is what you do not understand.'
The works of Markus Lüpertz (b. 1942, Reichenberg, Germany) break away from Pop Art and Expressionism, they guide us through a mixture of abstract and figurative motifs. Lüpertz insinuates human figures, managing to make the viewer wonder around silhouettes and shapes.
'I think it is the love with which you take the colour from the palette and put it on the canvas that warms and illuminates the painting.'
Andre Lanskoy, one of the major representatives of lyrical abstraction, lets colour compositions explode in his paintings. Colours and shapes create impressions of motion. The individual coordinated segments of colour are reminiscent of collages and forms a harmonious ensemble.
Laura Sachs (b. 1985 in Darmstadt, Germany) works in a unique way with bodies of images composed of volatile and solid materials. Accentuated with metal strips or completely enclosed in aluminium frames, the canvases assert themselves as multi-perspective objects in space.
HighRes photographed slides of art history icons explore the canon of art and its contemporary reception. By making visible the states of decay of the film based photographic medium, Riemer's works reveal the limits of reproducibility and at the same time question its materiality. Sebastian Riemer (b. 1982, based in Düsseldorf) consistently addresses the recurring questions in photography and shows that it can still be relevant today to take photographs, transform them and hang them on the wall to be experienced as works of art.
Bernd & Hilla Becher
'When we noticed that the industrial buildings were disappearing, we captured them with our camera. It was like an obligation for us.'
The influential artists couple, founder of the 'Düsseldorfer Fotoschule' or simply 'Becher School', Bernd (b. 1931 in Siegen; † 2007 in Rostock) and Hilla Becher (b. 1934 in Potsdam; † 10. Oktober 2015 in Düsseldorf) enriched the art world with their systematic photographs of architecture and industrial objects. Typical for the Becher couple was the grid-shaped arrangement of their pictures, with which they influenced the forthcoming generations of photographers. The shown tableau is their only work in which the same building is shown from different perspectives.
'The laws of semantics suddenly prove to be reversed: Up to now a thing was, was given, is a sign given, this was passible and therefore truly a sign when it finds an embodiment.'
Georges Mathieu (b. 1921 in Boulogne-sur-Mer; † 2012 in Paris) is considered one of the main representatives of Tachisme, an art movement that combines abstract, informal and lyrical compositions. The French artist achieved his fame through his oversized works, which show curved calligraphic lines. Mathieu's avant-garde impulses and his international influence on the later generation of abstract artists are still unmistakable today.
Press release courtesy SETAREH.