Tuesday, April 27, 2010

CHRISTIAN SCHOELER



"...For me the term superficiality as opposed to surface rests on a very thin line, that's true, but it is exactly this line I am interested in. It represents boundary and osculation point at the same time, it is a metabolic membrane between the inside and outside of a painting.

Everything that could remind us of the magic of art--the extravaganza, the sensuality, the glamour, the star-cult of the artist, the excessive and the ecstatic, the obsessive, the artist reaching for grandeur and timeless meaningfulness--all of this is being renounced and is discarded from the art-business today. Art as it used to be celebrated is now seen as authoritarian and overly formal. The repercussions of this new paradigm of disenchantment have large impact on the contemporary art-scene. This is even more pronounced when you look at scholarships. It is more about discourse than about obsession.



I think that the works of some artists of my generation consist to a large extent of information which is why these works look as lifeless and boring as the theoretical essays on their art that the artists have to hand in if they want to exhibit or apply for a scholarship. To my mind, however, the dogmatic disregard for formal beauty in art and its means of production evokes not only a lack of aesthetic pleasure, but also a lack of political impact.

I can't say that my paintings are always about me, but my experiences concerning my own body, especially in terms of vulnerability and the feeling of threat, certainly form a basis for how I paint... I am obsessed with this short, holy moment of youth's dignity, with this ephemeral time in which everything seems possible, immediately before the decline, before the sobering disillusion begins, as you become aware of the fact that everything happens completely differently and ends abruptly. The term 'adolescence' is for me in a certain way expandable. This moment of hope, or even, of completion. Somehow, that's what makes the creative processes so unique--you can broaden yourself toward a mysterious realm if you combine something from your own biography with something you imagine, or something from that is in the air. This combination then forms the artistic expression of a glamorous fiction.

If I think about bad situations in the past, I think about a painting by Heironymus Bosch, you can see the seven deadly sins presented in a series of circle images and framed by four smaller circle images detailing the four last things--'death', 'judgement', 'hell', and 'glory'--surrounding God's eye. In his pupil Christ shows his wounds and you see written below: "Cave cave deus videt" ("Beware, beware, God Sees"). And as Bosch wants him to, God also sees that 'invidia,' envy, the deadly sin, even takes over dogs. One dog with two bones looks greedily at a third one, while a second dog jealously watches him."

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