© Matthias Kolb
Under the banner “Last Supper”, Salon Dahlmann presents the first joint exhibition of Finnish artist Marianna Uutinen und Berlin-based painter Anselm Reyle on the 9th of November 2013. Just like Pop-Art icon Andy Warhol’s final cycle of art works, which was also titled “Last Supper”, this show – curated by Reyle and Uutinen themselves – is not only dedicated to superficiality, illusion and temptation; attracting and repelling the viewer in equal measure.
The dimensions of this cooperation are expounded upon in this exhibition, which shows the many elements both artist have in common whilst working across a surprisingly wide spectrum: reliefs, crushed foil structures, clashes of color, pieces of furniture and various objects stemming from the Eighties until today. Uutinen and Reyle’s works are based on various art historical movements but are also dealing with current themes, juxtaposing consumer culture with the history of art.
There are echoes of the formal vocabulary of Hard Edge, Minimal Art and links with Abstract Expressionism in both two-dimensional works as well as objects. The works dealwith the processes of artistic production and questions of authorship. Through the juxtaposition of Uutinen and Reyle’s work, a new context is created regarding for a discussion with and about the medium of painting: how can painting still compete with our multi-media dominated reality, and what are its limits?
For the first time, the early influence of Marianna Uutinen’s art on Anselm Reyle’s work is explored. Meanwhile, it also becomes apparent that Uutinen has incorporated Reyle’s oeuvre as well. Reyle first saw Uutinen’s art as early as 1995, when he was still an art student at the academy in Karlsruhe, he visited her exhibition at the Stuttgart Kunstverein. Her clear, minimalistic form language and unexpected use of materials – as in “Untitled”, 1989 – left an indelible impression on him. Her works continue to inform his artistic formal language as well as his radical use of material objects and inquiries into the meaning of art. His work is driven by the almost cringe-worthy banality of his motifs, as in his stripe paintings and painting-by-numbers pieces, as well as his appropriation of the residues of urban life such as footstools, vases and seemingly cheap shiny silver foil. He steers all these elements towards a brutal confrontation, critically cross-examining the idea of so-called “low art” and “high art”.
Marianna Uutinen’s work is similarly multi-faceted. She explores the various artistic levels of “camp” by taking it to a nearly excruciating level with tacky colors and plasticky materials. As early as 1964, theorist Susan Sonntag explained in her essay “Notes on Camp,” how this dimension of Kitsch can weave a web of meanings as well as constitute a play with symbols, challenging conventional approaches to perception. In the same manner, Uutinen provokes the viewer with the illusory materiality of her works. Although they appear to consist of scrunched-up pieces of silver foil, they are actually made up of numerous layers of paint. Through her surprising application of painting techniques, Uutinen’s art converges with Reyle’s work, who also explores the medium of painting through his nearly musical, swinging dynamics of color interspersed with jarring dissonances. In this manner, they abandon the medium’s hierarchical structures and expand its possibilities.
Opening hours: Saturdays 11am – 4pm and with appointment
Marianna Uutinen is showing, alongside her exhibition at Salon Dahlmann, recent works from the past few years at Galerie carlier | gebauer in I am Painting, from 16 November – 20 December, 2013. Opening: Friday the 15th of November, from 6-9pm.
Anselm Reyle's work is currently also on display at the New National Gallery in Berlin in the exhibition BubeDameKönigAss (JackQueenKingAce) along with Martin Eder, Michael Kunze and Thomas Scheibitz.