Newsletter Search Facebook Vimeo Twitter YouTube Instagram Deutsch

Events 2004

Exhibition | Main Hall

Michael Raedecker

Press preview July 23, 6 p.m.
Opening July 24, 12 a.m.
presenter: Hildegund Amanshauser

Open August 15, 2004, Feast of the Assumption Guided tours by appointment: Tel +43 662 84 22 94 0

The Salzburger Kunstverein continues its series of exhibitions devoted to figurative painting with a presentation of new works by Dutch artist Michael Raedecker in its summer exhibition. Michael Raedecker, a native of Amsterdam who now lives in London, combines painting with the techniques of embroidery and appliqué in his paintings. He works in traditional genres, and his oeuvre includes still lifes and portraits as well as interiors and landscapes. Many of Raedecker’s works are deliberately positioned at the boundary line between art and kitsch. A particularly fascinating aspect of Michael Raedecker’s painting is his unusual use of yarn and embroidered elements in combination with acrylic paints. His paint is often either applied very thinly or literally piled onto the canvas. Raedecker consistently merges the reality of the depicted image with the reality of his material, as in the work in which a thread representing a tree casts as shadow into the scene, both as a thread and as the tree it depicts.
Michael Raedecker: galloping growth, 2003 (left), 70,5 x 127 cm, emerge, 2002 (right), 140 x 110 cm acrylic and thread on canvas, Courtesy The Approach, London Raedecker’s interiors and landscapes present seemingly familiar settings. Landscapes without human figures, solitary houses and indoor rooms evoke a sense of familiarity but are equally discomforting. Although a brightly illuminated garage entrance, for instance, suggests that people must be nearby, Raedecker’s world of images is often strangely devoid of human presence. Stories without figures unfold in his paintings, evoking feelings of abandonment and latent unrest. The emptiness of the spaces in these works creates a sense of mystery and intensity. ”This nowhere-yet-everywhere land“, writes Jennifer Higgie, ”a place that every picture Raedecker makes seems to signpost – is capable of touching deeply buried nerves.“ (Michael Raedecker, Instinction, Basel 2002, p. 58 f.) The philosopher and architectural theorist Bart Verschaffel finds something ”unsettling“ in all of Michael Raedecker’s paintings. ”we do not readily comprehend what is actually happening in them nor do they offer us an ideal viewing distance from which we might feel that the image coalesces into an accessible whole. The paint, the various kinds of threads, and the other materials sometimes pasted and painted over, work at cross purposes. At the distance where, for example, the paint still yields an immaterial ‘image’ and forms readable figures, the threads already break away form the whole and turn into ‘wool’ and ‘hairs’ that undermine the image. On closer examination, loose hairs and threads stuck into the paint, along with protruding lumps of paint, evoke miniature landscapes, which then again approximate the complete image first seen in the painting, and so on.“ (Parkett no. 61, Zurich 2002, p. 99, 101.) The embroidery in the paintings corresponds to the weaving of a story which begins here for the viewer. The different realities Raedecker develops in his paintings are revealed in the interplay of proximity and distance, the familiar and the strange, foreground and background, inside and outside, reality and illusion, dark and light. In keeping with the tradition of Dutch painting, his works frequently allude to the transience of all things. The paintings presented at the Salzburger Kunstverein offer an overview of the various facets of Raedecker’s oeuvre, although the exhibition emphasizes works completed during the past several months. This is the first presentation of the work of this important artist in Austria. Michael Raedecker was born in Amsterdam in 1963. He studied fashion design at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam and painting at the Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten in Amsterdam and Goldsmiths College in London. He was nominated for the Turner Prize in 2000. Raedecker will be represented at the biennial in Sydney, Australia, this year.

A catalogue featuring an interview with the artist will accompany the exhibition (price 10,- Euro). Funding support for the exhibition provided by the Mondriaan Foundation and the British Council

Michael Raedecker: the reflex, 2003 acrylic and thread on canvas 190x300 cm, Courtesy The Approach, London

Michael Raedecker: the reflex, 2003 acrylic and thread on canvas 190x300 cm, Courtesy The Approach, London

Michael Raedecker: the reflex, 2003 acrylic and thread on canvas 190x300 cm, Courtesy The Approach, London