Satellite View, 2016, 200 x 150cm, Acrylic and Oil on Linen
Clouds, 2018, 235 x 360cm, Acrylic and Structure Paste on Jute
Clouds, Detail


Jutta Haeckel

Born 1972 in Hannover
1995 bis 2002 studies at Hochschule für Künste, Bremen. Masterstudent of Karin Kneffel.
2000 bis 2001 studies at Goldsmiths College, London
2012 Randall International Chair in Painting, School of Art and Design, Alfred University, New York Since 2018 Visiting assistance professor, MFA in Painting, School of Art and Design, Alfred University, New York and Düsseldorf.
Lives and works since 2004 in Düsseldorf.

Diverse Group and Solo Shows in Europe at the US, among others:
Museum Kunstpalast, Duesseldorf (G)*, Kunsthalle Lingen (G), Mathilden Höhe, Darmstadt (G)*, Kunsthalle Recklinghausen (G)*, Museum Baden (G)*, Galerie der Stadt Remscheid(G)*, Kunstverein Hannover (G)*, Kunstverein Recklinghausen (S)*, Lippische Gesellschaft für Kunst, Detmold (S), Galerie Cosar HMT, Düsseldorf (S), Hosfelt Gallery, New York (S), Hosfelt Gallery, San Francisco (S), Next Level Galerie, Paris (S), Kunstverein Leverkusen (S)*

(G) Group Show (S) Solo Show
* Catalog

Graininess, 2017, 120 x 150cm, Acrylic on Jute
Vortex, 2018, 290 x 190cm, Acrylic and Structure Paste on Jute
Vortex, Detail

Susanne Wedewer-Pampus

Matter and Illusion

Globalization, the interlinking of diverse systems and structures, networks with their own rules, data transfer – these are defining concepts for our current reality.
Jutta Haeckel has long been interested in these systems that have such impact on the way we live, see, and think, and in the patterns and structures that give rise to them. She prods and probes them, finding ways to render them in works of art. “When I paint, I am reflecting on the world I live in.”

Out of this come works, including large-scale pieces, of landscapes, of continents that stretch out both before and behind us. Layer by layer, our gaze works its way into them, discovering surface planes, linear plots and markings in close proximity to one another. A dense patch borders on a loose weave, the smooth abuts on the fractured, at once intermeshed and drifting apart. Traces of explosions can be made out, not so much in the moment of destruction as in the re-ordering and restructuring within this world of form and color. The gaze lingers on individual particles that seem to have broken free from the spatial confines of the painting, almost like 3D objects floating on the surface, as if detached – returning eventually to the background, to those little holes in the fabric that have been left as gaps or filled in from behind with pigment to create small patches of shimmering color.

Haeckel creates this initial underlying “order” before even beginning to paint, altering the jute that will serve as her canvas by pulling individual threads to make the first rough patterns and shapes. The process that follows involves dyeing, drawing, using masking fluid to protect the drawings, further dyeing, and the application of pastose color and structural sections. The use of a fine brush to give contours to delicate designs transports the abstract into the realm of the concrete, the figurative, the photorealistic. It is a process marked by continuous movement between abstraction and illusion, movement between different visual systems, structures and rules. “The traces or signs of these different systems are,” as Haeckel comments, “at times congruent, at times disparate, which makes them more difficult to read or interpret; it makes what you see, the information, ambiguous.”

For the artist, each painting is like an independent organism, a singularity, in which she develops independent design principles and strategies as the work unfolds. Over the course of the involved process from which the work emerges, a dynamic, nearly autonomous network develops, with new links to be discovered and new perspectives to be investigated. Each of the three works that were created for the exhibition at Kunstverein Leverkusen are such singularities, each a world unto itself, produced in close relation to the structural characteristics of the source from which the artist took inspiration.

Thus, Clouds is based on a map of the earth that shows what the world might look like after a rise in sea levels, as well as on several microscopy images. The starting point for Glacier, with its layers of color that have been applied and removed, was torn billboards and images of the earth’s sedimentary

layers. The patterns and motifs in Vortex were inspired by water flows and wave movements, images of mycelia, nerve cells and meteorological maps.

Haeckel deliberately incorporates a variety of information systems in her work. She combines different techniques to create pictorial space as a conglomerate of classic cartography, diagrams, data collections, images from GoogleMaps, nature and quotidian aspects of her own life. Employing artistic strategies from the history of art, she explores the interfaces between these forms of information and representation and their divergent ways of making sense of the world.

“In my works I combine opposites and paradoxes, such as figuration and abstraction, continuity and dissolution, coincidence and strategy. The works remain in an ambiguous place, in the space in between.” They are at once both materiality and illusion, or to put it in the terms of the exhibition title, matter and illusion.

From the German by Allen Mundy