Just how fascinating and productive cooperative partnerships or even symbioses between artists can be is seen in such famous names as Jackson Pollock und Lee Krasner, Paula Modersohn-Becker and Otto Modersohn, Jean Tinguely and Niki de Saint Phalle or Bernd and Hilla Becher, to name just a few.
Today couples presenting themselves as artistic collectives are part of the everyday art world. Yet what constitutes the coexistence of such a partnership for two young artists today?
The most striking feature of Schallenberg’s pictures are the pyramids made of “Dinge”, “things”, which are arranged in large and small formats from vases, boards, stones and many more objects deriving from the “Ding” world. The Gestalt character of such objects and the related level of precision are aligned in the picture until even the most improbable assembly of objects is brought into an agreeable arrangement.
Schallenberg’s painting is the de-icing machine in which the “Dinge” are to be unfrozen again and brought back to life.
Rank’s pictures look both inwards and outwards and play with the effects of light and shadow. The back lighting turns figures into silhouettes. The viewer of the picture becomes the observer, who voyeuristically gazes into the interior of the picture – together with the painted observers. Embedded in freely interpreted painting they are turned from protagonists into secondary roles. The outside becomes the gateway leading inward: The exterior landscape becomes the interior landscape.
In Rank’s work the narrative-figurative is made concrete in the reverse way. The moment that has just been experienced is frozen in time. The essential is revealed. These two artists work on the essential in their paintings and in this way their pictures become metaphors for the worldliness of their painting.
Mirko Schallenberg's paintings are modern still lifes. At first glance, the artist's keen sense for textures and well-balanced compositions, as well as materiality and spatiality, is apparent. He paints objects from his own extensive collection of materials and composes them in a new context. The beginning of his process includes the creation of sketches and a three-dimensional model. The purpose of the model is only to be used as an inspiration for the final pictorial vision and is not intended to be painted as a realistic interpretation. The painting style is however realistic, and Mirko Schallenberg places his objects as protagonists in a deliberate interaction with meticulous, impressive care. The very aesthetically and skillfully arranged everyday objects are executed in powerful and textural haptics and interact with each other. It is a constructive, metaphysical style of painting that deals with the mysteries of our reality.
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