Bartha Contemporary is delighted to present an exhibition of recent works by the German painter Stephan Baumkötter. The artist’s third solo exhibition with the gallery focuses on recent works including a series of extraordinary new paintings on paper alongside an assembly of four mesmerising small canvases.
An interview to be published shortly on bc.show accompanies the show, looking back at Stephan Baumkötter’s career spanning more than four decades. As the artist considers his time working with Donald Judd in Marfa and an extended residency at the Albers Foundation in Bethany he embarked on a new body of work that formed the basis for this show.
Void of any allegorical subject and conceived solely of their own volition, Baumkötter’s works engage viscerally. Here oil paintstick is applied directly by hand, drawn and then rubbed into the surface, layer by layer. At first, the monochromatic appearance offers a simple proposition. However, over time these paintings on paper and canvas reveal complex structures and shifts in colour. As the experience evoloves, the paintings respond to the surrounding light and reflect an emotional state .
Understanding colour not as constant and precise but rather as a range of conditions, allows the artist to create deeply engaging works. Here the paintings present an opportunity to experience colour as a physical matter, rather than projected light on a screen, industrially made flat and stable colour or printed colour, which dominates our everyday.
Baumkötter’s processes are often described as having more in common with drawing rather than painting. His latest paintings on paper perfectly reflect the artist’s continued interest in the medium. Encompassing a similar depth of colour with his works on canvas, these paintings, made on a hard surface rather than the soft and responding canvas, embody an even more immediate engagement with the surface. Perhaps more importantly, these seemingly rectangular pictures are set within a border of white paper, consciously referencing their support while partially disguising the hand-made form.
On the occasion of London Gallery Weekend May 13 - 15 extended opening hours apply.
A selection of works by gallery artist Stephan Baumkötter and Giulia Ricci will be exhibited alongside Sotirakis Charalambou and Raymund Kaiser at RaumX form April 28 until May 14, please see raumx-london.com