Now on view at New York space Kasmin Gallery, artist Cologne-based artist Jan-Ole Schiemann is mounting a debut solo exhibition, bringing with him a collection of new paintings that see the artist continuing to revel in both gestural abstraction and the history of 20th-century animation, aspects that combine to imbue his work with a rare sense of kinetic energy. Half-formed, simultaneously disappearing and reappearing shapes suggest that somewhere amidst the lines, there are figures tumbling, colliding, or fighting obscured by clouds of smoke. As a result of Schiemann’s meticulous, layered application of charcoal, oilstick, ink and acrylic.
Schiemann’s work draws on a historically resonant approach towards the conceptual construction of the canvas, gradually layering gesture upon gesture over the surface of the work until the artist arrives at its final form, a swirling mass of elements and ideas that seems to explode with a vivid energy and iconography. Schiemann’s process begins with the collection of references—cut-outs from cartoon strips, elements from his own drawing process—which the artist then collages onto transparencies and projects against the canvas. Using primarily ink on the unprimed surface, Schiemann uses sweeping gestures to build the dynamic base of the picture plane before moving on to more precise, illustrative detailing. The works are then built up to fruition carefully, introducing exuberant color and spontaneity as Schiemann reimagines the projected configurations. Cartoonish figures and references to modern animation abound, slapstick assemblages that seem to point directly towards certain modes of creation, yet simultaneously avoid classification as the viewer nears their points of origin.
Drawing is always at the forefront of this mode of practice, allowing the free-roving hand to shape and reshape the landscape of the canvas, always allowing him to return to sections and elements of the composition to embellish and reinterpret the works until one arrives at the final form. These pieces in particular practically explode with this sense of vivid interpretation of both the canvas and the marks made, a map of both interior and exterior space that emphasizes the artist’s sense of how time divides and subdivides, leaving only the tracing moments that collide to create the days of our life.
The artist’s work is on view through May 4th.
— C. Reinhart
Jan-Ole Schiemann: A Different Pose [Kasmin]