Judith Adelmann sees her artistic practice as a process of investigating the interaction between visual and tactile things. Viewers are confronted with surfaces that cannot be allotted to specific materials and possess structurally contrasting features. By using different materials, Adelmann explores the complexities of the sensory body and questions expectations of the clichés of materiality and consistency. Along with her formal endeavors, the artist wants to create situations that visualize moments of pause and intervals of “nothing” and “vacuum” in transformational processes. Makeshift arrangements in the form of sculptures oscillate between dissolution and duration, their disappearance being already inherent. Judith Adelmann studies at the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich in the class of Markus Karstieß – previously taught by Norbert Prangenberg.
Mickael Marman combines patterned fabrics with a spontaneous technique in the style of drip paintings. Colorful wax prints, popular in Western Africa, are placed as borders or diagonal components in relation and contrast to the lush, pastoral painterly elements. With them, Marman establishes a thematic connection to cultural identity and (post-)colonialism: The textiles that were produced as batik prints by the Dutch East India Company and others in Europe became popular in Western Africa in the nineteenth century and to this day symbolize status and wealth. In his works, Marman uses these textiles to reference both European market power – European colonial nations knew how to profit from their textile trade with Asia and Africa – and exoticism. To look at the fabrics today as typically African is to romanticize matters, since they were actually produced in Europe and then shipped overseas. Marman’s abstract works further reference artists from the American-European avant-garde and the influence of ethnic art on them. Mickael Marman studied at the University of Fine Arts Hamburg under Jutta Koether and at the Städelschule in Frankfurt am Main under Michael Krebber and Josef Strau.
Sophie Reinhold’s delicate works made from graphite, bitumen, marble, or other minerals deal with the fiction of naturalism. The artist understands the use of colors as a moment of personal presence, and not as a way to portray a situation, an external mood, or a place. Reinhold nips overly emotional, subjective expressions in the bud: By repeatedly applying glazing oil paint to sanded layers of marble dust and leveling the different materials with each other, the inherent emotional components and expressively charged gestures lose their footing, and only smooth surfaces revealing delicate color hazes remain. Reinhold contrasts the weightless diffusion with fragile yet clear structures of lines, bars, and waves. A deeply layered echo of painting remains tangible in the surfaces, captivating viewers much like immersing themselves in an icon would. Fleshing out the sublime and unrepresentable sentiment in painting is what the artist strives for in her work. Sophie Reinhold studied at the Weißensee Academy of Art Berlin under Antje Majewski and, previously, at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna under Amelie von Wulffen and at the Hochschule für Grafik und Buchkunst in Leipzig.
Elif Saydam’s oeuvre is informed by surrealist elements, abstract art, and cartoons – she works in the media of painting and text. Thematically, she explores the ascription of gender roles in society as influenced by social rituals and stereotypes. Motifs like a cowboy hat or a matador keep popping up in her works, which signify bravery and adventure and therefore indirectly inquire about the lack of female superheroes and adventurers. Using transparent nylon and chiffon as well as gold leaf, in turn, breaks with power symbols with masculine connotations. The artist is further interested in dealing with the creative process as something that lies between distraction and inspiration. She explores both the phase before actual artistic production and the idling moments during the work itself. Elif Saydam is a member of the artist and author collective Pure Fiction and studied under Monika Baer and Amy Sillman at the Städelschule in Frankfurt.
With her sculptures and large-scale installations, Anina Troesch brings together formal paradoxes such as hard and soft, excluding and accessible, threatening and comforting. She inserts a crafty aesthetic, laying no demand to consistency, clarity or narrative logic. Using the simplest of means, genres are combined in bold manners, resulting in a spatial collage of textiles and images. In this group exhibition Troesch shows a new sculptural work from 2016, “flag.” Troesch studied in the class of Judith Hopf at the Städelschule in Frankfurt am Main.
The ceramics of the young artist duo R-R feature cryptically amorphous forms – their sculptures include representations of organisms oscillating between natural and technical structures and elements of surrealistic constellations. Their motifs include masks, crowns, guardian figures, and sarcophagi and reveal a playful approach allowing for participation and reminding the beholder of Franz West’s “Adaptives” or works by the process artist Franz Erhard Walther. Raphael Weilguni and Viola Relle’s works captivate viewers by letting them feel experience material properties and aggregate states such as weight and rigidity as well as fragility and flexibility and by confronting them with the aesthetics of the incomplete. Their works often seem like found archeological objects and encourage viewers to ponder civilizational processes and cultural-anthropological matters such as that of humans as both cultural creators and creations of culture. With their “Hero” series, Weilguni and Relle consider promises that one has to take at face value for the time being and cannot immediately verify. Weilguni and Relle study at the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich – Weilguni under Jean-Marc Bustamante; Relle studied under Norbert Prangenberg and Kerstin Brätsch and currently works in the class of Markus Karstieß.
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