Katalog | Text Ina Gille (deutsch) | (englisch) | "present - Malerei und Grafik 2007"

| Übersicht | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 |

Christl Maria Göthner

Inside her atelier, everything is about painting. She is the empress of this kingdom, a restless and obsessive empress. In all the other rooms of her apartment you can find her paintings hanging on the walls, presenting her ceramic objects, her doors open for correspondences of all kinds. Music sets in; next door her husband is rehearsing with a colleague for a concert. The effort Göthner puts into her work seems to be tremendous. She hardly ever takes a break, unless she is forced to do so by life itself. The walls of the atelier are plastered with paintings. They are piled up one after another, those that are finished as well as those waiting for the artists final touch. The older ones are stowed on a large shelf. Since the artist has started painting with water-soluble oil paint, the stretched canvasses are worked on on the floor. The moment they are dry, they are put aside, have to make room, only to be fetched and worked on again a moment later. Everything must flow, must come from the inside, nothing can be forced, she says. The paintings are growing inside of her waiting to be born, and have to come out when they are ripe. And they always come out. If the process takes a little longer she occasionally becomes suspicious, sometimes even loses more than she gains from editing. It is difficult, but it has to flow until the moment when a picture is finished.

Cityscapes and landscapes, the abundance of flowers and portraits. Paintings as if sketched, lightweight and yet forceful, focused on their contextual structure. The water-soluble oil paint makes one think of water colours: The soft transitions of the portrayal create unique shades in the pictures, shades of greens and of blues, colours floating, wandering. Abstraction is always within reach, but the tangible remains decisive.
Towering New York, its streets and squares named after famous songs. Empty spaces in the foreground of the paintings, surrounded by the towering buildings which stretch out to the horizon. Green, blue and ochre prevail, light is glistening. New York – city of arrival and discovery, where the myth of the new world comes into play.
On the other side New York also means to bid farewell, to let go, to be set free for something new. It is a subject which can be found in many works, but it becomes even more tangible in these cityscapes. Apparitional figures, one of them in the guise of the son who has to re-enter his own country. Separate ways are gone, departures in different directions, intimate symbols, drowned by the colour composition of the painting as a whole.
The paintings of her own city are purer and calmer. Here, a single house can turn into a cathedral. Places to linger, streets and rooms flooded with light and air and inhabited by people. It sways, nothing can stay the way it was only a heartbeat ago, everything is in flux in those paintings, too.
The open landscapes are intimate correspondences with nature, emblematised by a tree row, a countryside trail or a stream. At the same time, they are formal explorations of the surface, colour compositions are intoned, and structures of space tested.

The floral paintings are opulent. The blossoms are in full bloom, revealing that crucial peak of their splendour where perfection is reached and perishability has not yet begun.
With only a few strokes of the brush, Göthner succeeds in making mental states tangible in her portrait paintings. Often, one only sees their faces, head-on, their expression determined by the strength of they eyes. There is hardly ever only one portrait of a person. More often, one will find variations of the painted characters, presenting them in a new light or showing a new aspect of their personality.
Additionally, the artist presents paintings where landscape and figure are alternately exposed to one another, where proportions and perspectives between landscape and figure change. Sometimes, a figure can be tall and almost defiant, overshadowing the landscape. Others take up a subordinate role in the picture and almost merge with the landscape. Here, hands can turn into creatures which pass on messages.

The large-sized drawings on the other side are lapidary, the lines of the carbon are gently brought to bear by the casein paint. Used only sparsely, the paint leaves space for what is drawn onto the white surface. Bodies and heads, mingled in swaying gestures, finding their own space, inhabiting it. Pliant, gruff, direct, interruptions within the drawings – the unfinished becomes a habitat.

Her ceramic art seems to be a world within itself. Next to the vases, lamps and figurines, the small relief-like objects present themselves as particularly decorative, even a little condescending. Gimmicks with a double bottom, almost child-like, they seem to have found their shape by chance. Their surface determined by fingerprints, these figures blossom in coloured glazes, cheerful, decorative and not sticking to the norm: Wall signs, appearing to have fled from the paintings because they felt they did not belong there. Unless, they are mounted directly on to wood, connected drawings, but that is a different story.

I see, I understand, the never-ending search for your own country becomes tangible in this particular work space. Borderlands, the addiction to feel alive is like the desire for a dark and snug place. How far can you reach, push something aside, which mountain do you have to climb, which one can you bypass? Astounding frankness, the artist works unsighted, is all herself, fully dives into her art, she has to.

Ina Gille