Critics’ Picks

Grit Richter, The Big House Self, 2014, wall painting, 11 x 17’.

Berlin

Grit Richter

Galerie Tanja Wagner
Pohlstraße 64
September 19 - November 8

The central piece in Grit Richter’s exhibition, a wall painting titled The Big House Self (all works 2014), is a grid of fifteen multicolored shapes on a black background underneath a white, dotted rooftop line. Slotted into the grid like rooms under the roof are Minimal forms such as a yellow square, a red circle, and a white X, which could allude to different elements of the “Self” of Jungian psychology. Displayed on the ground are five small sculptures made of pigmented concrete that look like slightly quashed pillows with trompe l’oeil fabric seams, with titles such as untitled (Betonkissen #2). The canvases on the wall similarly create contrast by mixing visual vocabularies of hard-edge abstraction, movie-advertisement graphics, and Surrealism into window-bounded perspectives and dreamlike images or projections of fantasy. Utilizing alternately controlled and accidental brushwork, Richter constructs compositions of frames within each painting as if to facilitate a formal coexistence of different levels of reality.

Shine On, You Crazy Diamond (Room #1, The Echo Chamber) is a sculpture made of vertical tree branches, the upper part of which is covered with a patchwork of textiles resembling a tent. The work is open around most of the main body of the piece, and it seems fragile but also as if it could offer a kind of shelter, thus addressing a further function beside discrete, decorative sculpture. As a whole, this exhibition is balanced by a smooth, transitional flow between paintings and sculptures that explore a complex notion of the self while having a lighthearted aesthetic.