Von Alters her / From the Old is the title of Claudia Sarnthein’s new body of work. Contours of the folkloric, the pagan and the Christian, Mesopotamia and the remote future reside, side by side, in her installation. Paintings on wood, linen and glass, alongside a group of brightly coloured ceramic and textile works hold a myriad of surfaces, patterns and textures, each asking for its individual reading distance and timeframe. This new ensemble of images and objects forms a fragmentary, yet subtly choreographed, notation of central European timelines. Old metaphors of vessel, cloth and table, reminding us of remote customs, folk art and Arts and Crafts — the ‘hand-made’ as an attempt to reach from the very old to the far future. Morgenrot / Aurora, the guiding image presented on the invitation card, brings to mind both Lars von Trier’s Melancholia (2011) and Paul Klee’s Angelus Novus (1920), and of course Walter Benjamin’s Engel der Geschichte (1940).
There will, in addition, be a small display of Sarnthein’s artist’s books, giving an overview of her practice and the wide-range of media she works in. Her solo show will be accompanied by a text by art historian and critic Mark Gisbourne.
Claudia Sarnthein is taking part in the International Studio Programme at Künstlerhaus Bethanien.