Katharina Grosse’s current exhibition in Berlin at the Hamburger Bahnhof offers a fresh demonstration of the distinctive physicality of her paintings, which are also characterized by a lavish use of bold colors. Jettisoning traditional implements such as the brush and canvas, Grosse enlarges the painterly space by sweeping over objects in situ – be they mounds of soil, fabric panels, her own bed, now, the exterior façade of the Rieckhallen building – with her spray gun. The luminous colors exudes vitality, and there would seem to be a strongly performative aspect to the process of Grosse’s painting. Yet the expansion of color onto sculptural and architectural elements does not so much erase the boundaries of objects as blur them. The synchronicity of painting, which harnesses the colorful imprint as a spatial impression, is a defining element also in Grosse’s photographs. Created especially for TEXTE ZUR KUNST, the work “Der Stuhl” (The Chair) shows the artist’s studio, turning the fact that colors figure in Grosse’s work as markers for spaces and objects into a motif in its own right. Traces of the painterly act come to the fore in an aesthetic inquiry into art’s first beginnings. The instantaneousness of photography is reflected by the small format, making “Der Stuhl” (The Chair) a miniature of the day-to-day work in the studio: it promises insight into the creative process, though the latter ultimately remains opaque.
Katharina Grosse, "Der Stuhl", 2020, Ditone print, image size: 6.4 x 14.6 cm, paper size: 29.7 x 21 cm, edition: 100 + 20 A.P. + 2 P.P., numbered and signed on the back, € 410.- plus shipping.