Where is the Madness that You Promised Me: Friedrich Kunath In Antwerp
Tim Van Laere Gallery presents a solo exhibition by German-born painter, draftsman and sculptor, Friedrich Kunath, who was one of the standout artists in our Juxtapoz x Superflat exhibition with Takashi Murakami at Vancouver Art Gallery. Where is the Madness that You Promised Me will be introducing a new body of work inspired by the contemporary world and encompassing citations, collages, recycling and references to various sources.
Born in East Germany and now based in Los Angeles, there is a slight tension present in Kunath's peculiar compositions. Mixing the emotional content as firm base of his work with dead-eye take on the good life in the West, the artist creates a strange ambiance that is often emphasized with stereotypical sunset, sky and tropical landscape imagery. “Sunsets are a such problematic images, which is part of what drew me to them, they're so empty," Kunath said in an interview with GQ Magazine. "Sunsets and rainbows, They're the saxophone solos of art. It allows me the opportunity to make them full again. To find a way past the irony and have them become a sincere statement.”
Juxtaposed against quotations and surprising visual elements, the end result reflects the spontaneous work process that is crucial for the construction of his work. Strongly relying on automatism and complete reset of intent, the canvases are mixture of everything from iconic European design to German Romanticism and Hollywood kitsch, all colliding on the surface of the canvas and forming the final image and narrative. Purposely allowing his process to stay visible, the layers of imagery revealing the variety of drawing styles and techniques used, including colorful watercolour washes, airbrush, handwritten text or cartoonish and doodle-like elements. All wrapped within rich textured veneer of oils, the paintings are exploring "themes of love, hope, despair and vulnerability that are infused with tragicomic pathos and dreams of possibilities." —Sasha Bogojev
All images courtesy Tim Van Laere Gallery, Antwerp
The show is on view17 May 2018 - 23 June 2018