Mißlungenes Bild (2021)
The paintings, photographs, and sculptures of the artist Michaela Eichwald, who has had solo exhibitions at the Palais de Tokyo, Paris; the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis; and Munich’s Lenbachhaus exude an extraordinary physicality. No less powerful than the visual stimuli that Eichwald’s works exude is the urge to touch their surfaces. Whether casting the detritus of everyday life (erasers, brooches, fishhooks, food packaging, or potato sprouts) in synthetic resin, preserving them for eternity in sculptures resembling bedside lamps, or making paintings with acrylic and oil but also lacquer, stage blood, graphite, stickers and more, sometimes exposing them to the elements to give them the patina of Old Masters, Eichwald makes work that is at once so genteel and so abject that one gawks at them in awe, wanting to reach out and stick a finger into the gooey and sticky, scarlet-red and chocolate-brown, glistening and dull surfaces. The edition Eichwald has produced for TEXTE ZUR KUNST, given the characteristically self-deprecating title “Mißlungenes Bild” (“Failed Painting,” 2021) is one such sensuous collage. The artist cut the eponymous “failed” painting – in acrylic and lacquer on imitation leather – into 36 equal parts. Each part comprises one edition, each a unique piece. As such, the work is more than the sum of its parts: a painterly alchemy in which the seemingly failed painting becomes gold and silver.