From DYSTOPIA to UTOPIA
From DYSTOPIA to UTOPIA
A group exhibition with the works of three German artists On Sunday the 23.08.2020 a vernissage took place in the Pashmin Art Gallery. There the artists Ben Schütze, Sabine Suckrau and Horst Wagner exhibited their works.
The following is an excerpt from the speech by the curator of this exhibition Chenxin Ge.
With artistic skill, the artists of this exhibition, Ben Schütze, Sabine Suckrau and Horst Wagner, create their imaginative art worlds of various kinds. The artistic styles vary from symbolism and abstraction to realism. One thing the three artists have in common, however, is that their works no longer merely create a doubling of the world by imitating here and now, but rather aim at a search for beauty and expand our horizons beyond dystopian finality to a future full of new possibilities.
The artist Sabine Suckrau directly confronts the current situation. In the titles of her works as well as the pictorial elements themselves, one can already sense references to her repertoire during this time of crisis. With her pictures, however, she does not give a clear definition of this time, but manifests a reflective way of thinking by bringing together the depictions of the negative present conditions with the pleasing, inspiring symbols. The symbolic figures, whose figures are almost never finished, float together with free abstract brushes in a dreamlike coloration. The imperfect, unstable and incomplete Wabi-Sabi aesthetic of the almost fragmentary quality of her pictorial language leaves the viewer an interspace for imagination and depicts an open future.
Ben Schuetze´s art work is inspired by the fantastic colorfulness of the used material. By applying and removing the colors the artist ``destroys´´ the original painting ground and creates a new effect by overlapping different layers of paint, which gradually expand perpendicular to the two-dimensional canvas. Based on the idea of destruction, however, Ben Schütze´s picture surface does not remain a dismantled ruin. He deconstructs the destroyed and creates his own idyll full of inner joy. Thus, in his artistic world, iron rust is transformed into a high sea, the used copper leaf into evening glow, damaged structure of confusion into a changeable glitter ball, the worn surface into shining sparks.
The Erfurt artist, Horst Wagner, is stylistically oriented towards the Leipzig School and creates his works with craftsmanship on socially critical topics. His visual language is realistic but at the same time dramatic, with a quirky combination of various imaginative components and explicit meaning. He uses industrial foundations that have collapsed, showing their inner structure of reinforced concrete, as a stage for the grievances of the present. The background is hazy and monochrome, showing no natural or human landscape. The realistically designed human figures form a contrast to the nightmarish, gloomy milieu, which shows that this is a vision of a world, a negative perfection of the existing, a prophecy of doom. But Wagner´s world view does not remain in this dystopian imagination. The depiction of wild plants serves in Wagner´s works as a sign of hope and always appears together with figures of the younger generation. Wagner does not reconcile with the irreconcilable, always expresses his criticism relentlessly. But he leaves a narrow space in his warning. A space to breathe, to dream, a space for the seed of new hope to sprout from the dark ground.
© Chenxin Ge
Pashmin Art Gallery