ravensburg

Gerhard Mantz

Stadtische Galerie

In the hall of an early-baroque building in this late-medieval town, Gerhard Mantz placed 14 objects on two long walls. Their inner construction can’t be determined by their outer appearance, which usually consists of several polished layers of enamel in various colors. (Certain works are covered in felt or gleaming paint.) At first glance, the various surface colors seem to give the works a surrounding aura. This appearance is evoked by fluorescent paint on the hidden side of the objects. These reflections double the circular, spearlike, or irregular shapes of most of them, like an artificial visual echo. We know similar synthetic auras from photographic solorizations, or from Andy Warhol’s portraits, but here they are fixed in three dimensions.

The contrast between something looking like an aura and the synthetic means used to create such an impression demonstrates a calculated resistance

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