Nadine 2014Salon
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Nadine Wölk


March 28th - May 7th
Opening reception for the artist:
Friday, March 28th, from 7 to 9 pm



pdf with new works here...

When Nadine Wölk explains that a red thread runs through her work, an underlying feeling that has something to do with her generation 's hunger for life, with the desire for a free and meaningful life, with the joy in the here and now- then one is pleased to buy it, both about her and her paintings. With her it is a question of authenticity, about life forms: her own and those of her friends, her contemporary generation.

In 2001 she decided to follow up her degree as a fashion and communications graphic artist by studying painting, and made it as a master student under Martin Honert and graduation from the Dresden Academy in 2008. Asked about references and orientation points Wölk mentions a complex relationship of numerous art works, philosophical ideas, authors, films and personalities that she is interested in and which explicitly or implicitly shape her work. Here the focus an certain content and subjects that she deals with in her paintings becomes evident; the clearest focus is certainly on the portrait.

At the beginning of her degree course Nadine Wölk concerned herself intensively with the handicraft side of painting on the one hand, but in particular with the so-called mummy portraits (dated 30 BC to AD 300): the portraits painted on wooden boards that were found attached to mummies in Egypt. Egyptian grave and papyrus painting continues to occupy the painter. If we now look at Wölk's way of painting, which above all uses cheap acrylic paint from the DIY store, then the suspicion may arise that these surfaces, the very mobile, sometimes very (small) impasto is inspired by this early wax or tempera painting on wood. Her interest is still almost exclusively for portraits: "People and figures interest me. I see landscape and architecture etc. as an explanatory, broadening device, not OS an independent subject. . . . Later for me the concept of the portrait expanded radically (importantly here above all Gerhard Richter). In addition there is a new feeling for image aesthetics, choice of motif and the question of naturalism. Naturalism in the sense of "copying" recedes in favour of a more two-dimensional image aesthetic and a rather simplistic mood analysis. "As someone who prepared the way for her Wölk mentions among others the painter Peter Doig, but also the collages of a Tim Roeloffs or the photography of James Nachtwey and Robert Frank. All these influences have been absorbed in order to depict her own feeling,
her own present.

In 2008 Nadine Wölk showed an exhibition with new works under the title Deleted Scenes, with numerous night shots of young people, street scenes in which the bright shining figures in the camera flash stand out clearly from the dark background. The "deleted" here may refer to the rapid fading of this moment, but also to the complex structure of memory. The question of the availability and ability to recall (unconscious) experiences becomes clear. In this context Wölk makes use of the documentary quality of the photo as an image of reality and simultaneously shows that memory is necessarily to be sought outside of photography. An "understanding" mostly outside people's generally interpretable mimic and gesture. In her work Wölk once again casts doubt upon the existence and the relevance of an "objective" portrayal of our reality- and leaves the viewer of her paintings with numerous questions about the construction of image, of memory and of perception.

(Text: Lioba Reddeker)