Johannes Kahrs, born 1965 in Bremen (DE), lives and works in Berlin (DE)
The work of Johannes Kahrs confronts us with images that are difficult to place at first sight. In tactilely translated fragments, we can find references to politics, religion, history, media and more personal (or private) subjects. By means of Kahrs' specific pictorial treatment, the subject matter is infused with an intensified form of corporality, sensuality that threatens to break into fever. In the most recent work, there often is an almost fetishistic focus on body parts, like hands, legs, lips and torsos. The recognizable aesthetics of Kahrs' work fills the image with a sense of arousal, or infection. The colours, which resemble more or less the spectrum of a bruise, contribute to the rather obscure implications of the image. These implications never become a real theme; the paintings of Kahrs remain speculative in their apparent sense of physical and emotional doom. As if true beauty has a natural ally in concealed disease, implicated nausea, emotional instability and the futile attempt to take a legitimate position towards the visual output of contemporary society. (Gerrit Vermeiren)
In 2016 the artist will have a solo exhibition at FRAC Île-de-France in Paris. Before he had solo shows at Kunsthalle Nürnberg in Nuremberg, 2014, Staatliche Kunstsammlungen in Dresden, 2013, CentrePasquArt in Biel, 2012, GAMeC in Bergamo, 2007, Parasol Unit Foundation for Contemporary Art in London, 2006, and Künstlerhaus Bethanien in Berlin, 2002. His show A-h travelled from Kunstverein München in Munich, 2001, to FRAC Pays de la Loire in Carquefou, 2001, and S.M.A.K. in Ghent, 2001.
His work was included in group shows at Centre Pompidou in Paris, Museum Kunstpalast in Düsseldorf, SFMOMA in San Francisco, Dallas Museum of Art, Caixa Forum in Barcelona, FRAC Auvergne in Clermont-Ferrand, National Museum of Poznan, amongst others.
He participated in the Lyon Biennial, 2015, Mediations Biennial in Poznan, 2014, Taipei Biennial, 2002, and Manifesta, 2004.
Work by the artist is held in major museum collections including the Centre Pompidou, Paris; MOCA, Los Angeles; UCLA Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; MoMA, New York and S.M.A.K., Ghent.
Johannes Kahrs joined the gallery in 1999.