Bernd Jünger

Galerie Schneider

There are two methods of introducing new technological processes into art. One approach—I would tentatively call process-oriented—sees the material as a vehicle that reveals unstable, interim results that can, in some cases, serve to document the working process. This method addresses the transitoriness of process and defines its relationship to the conditions of exhibiting as well as the concrete situation of reception. The second approach bears the traits of a calculated operation: a technological procedure is introduced into a conventional artistic technique. It serves, as in the case of Bernd Jünger’s new works, to reflect the very constraints of artistic convention. The familiar conceptual problem addressed by painting is the wish to bring both the represented world and the representational means equally to the fore; in other words, to assert the durability of the (represented) object while avoiding the snares of representation. Jünger’s large-scale works, scanachromes on paper, represent painting by means of a new technology. The originals, mostly small gouaches, are enlarged by an ink-spray process guided by scanning and digital conversion. The structure, color, and proportions of the original are retained (apart from certain machine induced distortions). In other words, there is no intervention in the enlargement process from the model to the new “original.” Blowing up the image is the decisive element that reflects on the process of painting.

By changing the size and medium, flinger holds the viewer at a distance, while the color and formal relationships of the painting continually refer to the small format. The process of technological conversion, then, destabilizes the act of seeing, which can no longer assure the viewer’s fixed distance. The vivid color is preserved in all its clarity by means of the reproduction, but even this vividness is revealed as a technoid, brutal naturalism: no longer is the question of the reality of the world explored by the naturalistic representation of an object; now it is explored by the loss of the object, of the model.

Achim Wollscheid

Translated from the German by Leslie Strickland.