Speech in English

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Everything is always different

Speech by W.O.Geberzahn the vernissage on 09/02/2012 at Klinikum Christophsbad, Göppingen



"Everything is always different" - so I named this exhibition. The pictures that you see here are not a complete cycle, but selected works from recent years.

"Everything is always different" - this is an experience that everyone has probably ever, more or less, made in his life. Amundsen officially broke on the North Pole, but he was the first at the South Pole. Children want to be a pilot and end as a control agent. I imagine to paint an abstract painting in shades of yellow and it ends as something objective in dark blue tones.

"Everything is always different" - that is personal and, ultimately, political. Our brain, once trained by the mammoth hunting and escape reflexes, is now captured by such a fast flash memory, instead of a precise perception usually only stay on the shadow self.

"Everything is always different" - because we have become accustomed. At noodles for example, or at Daimler-Cars. Especially at ourselves to see on our perception that only sees what she wants to see what she has learned. We distinguish from the others happy, because it's so tedious.

"Everything is always different" - because we define ourselves because we do not set ourselves. No sooner have you set yourself, you think about how it would have been if we had chosen one of the other options may 3568. Naturally better. Or worse. If we did not set ourselves, we would continue to lead our lives in the subjunctive. Binding.

"Everything is always different" - who constantly paints cats and dogs can be sure that his pictures are warmly. Most popular images of art history landscape - ideal as possible! I am not aware of similar artists, dealing with naked mole-rats. Ugly animals. Well, deer and elephants are to some extent still consensus.

But I've also decided not to.


"Everything is always different," because there is no other way. Otherness has difference. So differences are information when Bateson's phrase that "information is differences that make the difference," repent.

I hope I have now confused enough.

Actually, I was supposed to say something else. In my personal experience, it is quite rare that artists express intense about their work. You have no desire to, and usually falls to them also nothing to participate. I'm not that much different, but not consistently. Sometimes I could jabber any nonsense, sometimes I will not speak like a megalithic grave. Today I try a middle way.


One thing I know for sure: pictures have always fascinated me, more than anything else. Painting and drawing were the most welcome distraction in a smelly elementary school in the 1950s, and the Dürer hare I found in the newspaper, I drawed on a boring Easter Sunday 1961, was an inspiration. The forced labor with an art professor during my architectural studies produced in me a break, the healing lasted some decades. There is hardly worse fates than wrong and bad teachers.



If someone paints, who is an architect by the basic professional, is expected to paint very clear shapes and colors. You won't get this from me. And I tell you why:

The second half of the 20th Century was the time when everything was suddenly different. We had glorious enemies, we could oppose. We had friction that sparked the fire for being different. We devoured tons of information and wanted to change. Yet my study years were heavily influenced by the spiritual legacy of the Bauhaus, even those ideas were already more than fifty years of history. In the postwar period was the Die Gute Form (Ulm) dominating, the architecture was influenced by the straightness of an Egon Eiermann - I have met him personally - and only in the liberal arts were different currents possible, everything was different, everything was possible. Modernism was virtually brought functionality and thus - but we were also grateful for - an ideology-free order in the postwar world. The reduction to basic shapes and primary colors was somehow liberating to the "less is more" of Mies van der Rohe was helpful.

Much later, in the 1990s, the British sociologist Zygmunt Bauman has said that modernity is an essential means of generating order and said, "Geometry is the archetype of the modern mind. The grid is their dominant expression ....... geometry shows how the world would be if it were geometrical ....... "

Yes, the order is great and often helpful, sometimes overwhelming and very restrictive. Grown up in this cosmos of the modern architecture and design, that was my world, my world of images, my perception. But for me, what was referred to me as modernity, today is only one possible view of the world.


Characteristic for me in my view is a term from the graphic design on the computer: the layers. Everything is always different because it is overshadowed by something else, the look in again clouded, changed distracts deflects, overused. I have driven this topic very much in my image "Furious standstill. Maria Riesch". When the picture was finished, my wife scolded me:  "That was such a great skier, now you can see nothing at all!" So it is, I can not help it!

During this time, the overlays, the plains and the virtuality of it are no longer the ideas alone, as in the art of the 1990s, but the physical, the rem comes back into favor, and so did the so often pronounced dead painting. It does not matter what material is used alone important is the interaction between content and form.

An essential and important element to me was like painting over, covering and add new elements freely generated. This leads to shifts in traditional painting, except that the material will not be used in the traditional manner, but to ensure the diversity of the picture idea to give adequate expression to some extent also to discover, to find. Here, the levels from passing into each other, sometimes they remain separate. But they always correspond to mitigate off, escalate, remain neutral, open, contrast, can take months. This creates new structures, shapes, import, export and looking through.


In the image content, it is less important to me, "what it is", but what does the picture effect, of what we associate with, what we believe, what it could mean. Uniqueness I strive to express NOT because it does not exist in my opinion. Everything can always be different. The uniqueness of modernity - as I said - is old hat. And another thing is important to me for the contents: Setting specific topics, repetition and variation is also not my goal. And - this is important to me: my pictures are always somehow politically, socially critical, ironic - in the sense that I am concerned with the way people of today.

And so my work is ultimately a permanent sequence of rational and intuitive experience and action, where I might focus on theming of relationships and processes. A few years ago I would have to imagine that it would be just the modern physics that would facilitate us today to look at the visible and invisible structures of relationships in our lives.

So writes the quantum physicist Heisenberg employee Hans-Peter Dürr: "The new finding is now: The shape (or more generally a type of figure) is that does not change over time. Matter does not exist basically. These forms only as "as if" phenomenon with larger accumulations of nuclear shape being on a higher level by spatially averaging out. This is the revolutionary beginning of modern physics. "

And further says Dürr: "In the quantum world, there is the multi-valued logic, an in-between, the undecided. We have to get used to. As long as we can think of something, we are wrong. If something happens spongy, I come closest to reality. For statements about them are ambiguous. "

And the director of this year's Documenta Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev says: "For me, confusion nothing negative, but a very creative field. Clarity is a dangerous thing for me. "


To commit to this vagueness seems to me more important than ever to know everything from the outset, plan to set. The production of images is not a linear process, but a more strenuous averaging the possibilities, a fumbling in an infinite space, which is so different light and dark, that you can easily runs.

However, the risk of bleed is here in Christophsbad rather low. I hope you enjoy looking at pictures. And always remember that not everything you need to understand at first - but they can crib from the details of the images - that usually helps. Sometimes it goes click, sometimes you remain clueless.


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© wog.art - W.O.Geberzahn  2017