Kunstverein Hamburg Opens Charley Harper Exhibition

Kunstverein Hamburg presents an exhibition of work by Charley Harper, on view through 25 June–11 September 2011 Opening: Friday, 24 June 2011.

Charley Harper, “The Name is Puffin,” 1971. © Charley Harper Art Studio

The exhibition “Cornet of Horse” features several installation settings by Berlin-based artist Henning Bohl (born in 1975) that are linked both in terms of content and in terms of recurring motifs and materials and the way these are employed. Besides referring to each other, Bohl’s works also contain numerous, often subtle references to other art (movements). While his use of references follows a certain logic, it does not necessarily aim to produce meaning. In addition to exploring various possibilities for generating picture motifs, Bohl also poses questions about the presentation and staging of art. Large-scale canvasses featuring collages of layered shapes cut from rolls of paper hang from plasterboard elements that are piled on sawhorses, creating their own architecture alongside the architecture of the exhibition space. This questioning on the part of the artist—which for him can never be finally resolved—causes the status of his work to be relativized in several different ways. Thus the pictures are relegated to the status of stage props, while the means of presentation take on an independent sculptural and conceptual significance of their own.

The American painter and graphic designer Charley Harper (1922–2007) is well known for his detailed and geometrically determined illustrations, prints and posters showing motifs from flora and fauna. His works combine nature-oriented realism, impacts from cubism and minimalism to an independent visual language. His motives are reduced to the very essential, to the main characteristic. But to abstract form and figure leads to an increase and an accentuation of their identity: “I never count the feathers in the wings—I just count the wings.” Harpers screen prints are characterized by this simultaneous idea of simplicity and the variety of forms that create a distinctive universe. Sometimes his compositions appear as geometrical hidden object pictures revealing animals and plants not until the second glance. His almost scientific design generates an intergenerational attraction through their catchy and fascinating language that is not only attractive to kids. Showing his work for the first time in Germany the exhibition at Kunstverein Hamburg assembles more than 60 screen prints of Charley Harper’s colorful wildlife.

Kunstverein Hamburg
Klosterwall 23
20095 Hamburg

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