Miriam Cahn

Kunstmuseum Bonn

The famous question Is it still possible to write poetry after Auschwitz? has been transformed by the Swiss artist Miriam Cahn into the no less pressing question, Is it still possible to make significant art in a world that is threatened by the nuclear bomb?

Cahn’s medium is drawing, a painterly kind of drawing marked by many gradations between black and white, line and surface, figure and spatial expanse. Her images are traumatic, comparable to that incomprehensible dance of figures in a dream, where location is as difficult to define as it is in Cahn’s work. Each drawing intensifies this sensation of being in an ambiguous psychic place from which impossibly contorted faces and figures emerge. These figures are a melange of animal, human, and plant forms, either goblins or, more often, menacing ghosts, children or quivering old people. All are without a firm stand. They circle about one

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