22 October 2012

ARTIST WATCH: CHRISTIAN HENKEL

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all images courtesy and copyright Christian Henkel

At one point in his life, the German sculptor and painter Christian Henkel (*1976) must have decided that the shape of a half ellipse will become significant for his practice. Mostly raised by four steel-legs so that the geometric shape reminds me a bit of a house, Henkel repeatedly redefines the object over and over. Colours, material and collage-techniques change, but Henkel holds on to the pattern, as if it was an investigation. Depending on the the exhibition, he juxtaposes his flying half-ellipses to stapled objects, little figures, paintings or pieces of nature, such as a tree. 
The artist calls his practice Amateur Standard, which could be understood as a conceptual statement against conceptual art. What I find striking about his work is that Henkel breaks with all conventions. He dares to mix-and-match, to invent something completely new. The result is beautiful and self-confident. If Sigmund Freud would have known that the repetition compulsion syndrom could be so cool, he would maybe have considered not to treat it after all.

Christian Henkels work is currently shown in the exhibition "AMATEUR STANDARD. PROFI" at Kunstpavillon Innsbruck in Austria and it runs until the 10th of November 2012.

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all images courtesy and copyright Christian Henkel

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