In this group exhibition titled “Figuratum durch Abstractum II” the works by three artists, SPONK (Dan Geffert), Janne Peltokangas and Ute Anna Thiess are exhibited. SPONK uses his own self-made machine in creating abstract art. Peltokangas objectifies abstract art in sculptures and Ute Anna Thiess make a connection between abstract and figurative art with putting the figures at the center.
Abstract genre, in a narrow sense, has neither theme nor object. Previously, abstract was not a part of classic hierarchy of genres, which were developed in European culture by the 17th century. But when the freedom of art expression started from the end of 19th century to 20th century, and then into the 21st century, so abstract art flourished. It was in the 20th century, that abstract art rejected the mimetic approach to art. On the other side we encounter figurative art. Since the influx of abstract art, figurative art has referred to any form of art that holds strong references to the real world. But like all other phenomena, it is reasonable to think of a continuum where on one end we have pure abstractionism and on the opposite end we have pure realist art. In between, numerous forms can emerge. However, we should have in mind that from, let’s say early expressions of human being on the walls of caves, there have been some elements of abstractionism at work.
SPONK (Dan Geffert)
“I paint hand in hand with nature. My creative process is equivalent to an orchestra, whereby I take on the role of the conductor and the colors take the role of individual instruments.”
The resulting huge color landscapes take you on spectacular journeys into endlessly complex worlds full of visual stimuli, associations and enigmatic amorphous structures.
“Viewing vivid liquids”: color landscape is like a mirror that reflects the individual thoughts and memories of the viewer in his “Vivid Liquids – Symmetrics” series; SPONK goes one step further by specifically reflecting selected image elements. SPONK elicits the amorphous structures of his color landscapes, a living form of aesthetics, which only evolution could evoke in nature.
Vivid Liquids: The Elemental Behavior of Fluent Colors is an experimental form of abstract art. Here, 30-year-old artist SPONK researches the aesthetics of the random behavior of colors and liquids. SPONK uses various methods to provoke liquid substances to breath-taking phenomena on specially designed “carriers”. The manifesting phenomena and patterns are sometimes very fleeting phenomena, which SPONK documents them by using a self-designed and built “Ernst Haeckel” machine in the form of videos and photo collages.
Janne Peltokangas (Finland)
Janne Peltokangas (b. 1979) combines his knowledge as a traditional blacksmith with his background as a Sami growing up in Lapland. In his research, he investigates the spiritual belief system of the Sami in relation to objects in nature. In this Peltokangas raises interesting questions, if a handmade object can contain a feel of spirit and what an object enables to express this. Peltokangas intuitively explores forms of complexity through traditional blacksmith techniques.
The past ten years Peltokangas have worked as an artist around Europe and North-America. He has exhibited his art together with Eva Hild, Clay Ketter and Rick Smith, to name a few. Peltokangas has shown his work in art museums, galleries and Biennales.
At the moment, Peltokangas lives in Finnish Lapland on his family farm. There he works in a smithy that has passed on in his family for generations, together with the age-old knowledge of forging. Smithy and the farm are on a remote island surrounded by mountains and spirits of ancestors. In Spring of 2020 his selected works were exhibited by Pashmin Art at Hong Art Museum and Poetic Habitat Art-space in Chongqing, China
Ute Anna Thiess
“Painting takes me on a journey into inner worlds. In the process, hidden soul-images reach a consciousness and a pictorial reality which are connected to each other visibly and invisibly.”
Ute Anna Thiess puts the “Figure in the center”. The fascination of the abstract figurine as a design object with its versatile expression is at the center of her large format acrylic paintings. By overlaying different layers of paint, partly impasto, partly transparent and by using other techniques differentiated effects arise that become a field of tension from color nuances into one interconnected image composition.
A combined form of abstract-figurative art is clearly seen in her works.