The Painter, a film by Albert Oehlen, Oliver Hirschbiegel and Ben Becker
Under the direction of Oliver Hirschbiegel, actor Ben Becker on screen impersonates the contemporary painter Albert Oehlen and re-creates a painting that Oehlen himself and in parallel is creating step by step in the background, with the actor improvising the process in front of the camera. The finished on-screen painting is an original “Oehlen” on which the artist himself never laid hands. The off screen blueprint painting was destroyed after principal shooting had finished.
Originally planned to be a performative statement the projects developed into a fully fledged feature film of 92 minutes, crossing formal boundaries and questioning the meaning of the creative process and the struggle for authenticity on various levels.
The Painter follows the artist / actor as he is struggling and suffering along this process with us watching in joyful despair and what might happen next until the white canvas has turned into a finished painting.
The outcome is a one-man rollercoaster that appears to be a documentary but in fact is a staged and guided improvisation with the “real” process happening behind the camera. The Painter is a constant flow of the artist’s journey with elements of farce and comedy topped with emotional moments of truth...in front of and behind the camera and leaving it up to us to decide what is real and/or authentic.
Watch the trailer here.
Albert Oehlen, Rudolf Stingel, Christopher Wool et al.
There Is Always One Direction (group show)
de la Cruz Collection, Miami
2021 – 2022
Works by Albert Oehlen, Rudolf Stingel and Christopher Wool are included in the group exhibition There Is Always One Direction, on view at the de la Cruz Collection in Miami. This annual exhibition brings together paintings, sculptures, and site-specific installations from the de la Cruz collection.
de la Cruz Collection
Albert Oehlen x Sven-Åke Johansson: Rhythm Ace & Slingerland
Galerie Max Hetzler, Berlin is pleased to announce Rhythm Ace & Slingerland, which was recorded during a concert conceived by Albert Oehlen with percussionist Sven-Åke Johansson at the Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg in May 2019.
This new album, a co-production by NI VU NI CONNU and Galerie Max Hetzler, with liner notes by Max Dax is one of numerous collaborations between longstanding friends Oehlen and Johansson, following from their 2003 album Shotgun Wedding, also featuring Mayo Thompson of Red Krayola. This album explores how art infuences music and vice versa – a question often explored in Oehlen’s work.
The idea originated from Johansson’s visit to the artist’s studio in 2018. Oehlen showed the drummer his collection of rhythm machines, American and Japanese, from the 1960s onwards. Oehlen explains “I collect old drum machines because I fnd the contradiction fascinating that you collect devices that can do as little as possible. A drum machine is more attractive to me the more limited it is.”
Johansson responds to Oehlen’s musings and collection by creating the performance for Rhythm Ace & Slingerland. Johansson says of the performance “the situation was an extension of my being and also that of this device. It is a win for both: man and machine. So the experiment was successful.”
This record is available on our publications website.
Collaboration with "Talk About Lebanon"
Galerie Max Hetzler is pleased to team up with "Talk About Lebanon" in the wake of the fatal explosion in Beirut on 4 August 2020. The first in a series of collaborations is a T-shirt featuring a painting by Albert Oehlen from his iconic "Baumbilder" (Tree Paintings) series. All proceeds from the sale will go towards the NGO "Live Love Beirut" whose mission is to provide assistance to those who cannot afford to repair their homes after the explosion.
The T-shirt can be purchased at Talkaboutlebanon.co.uk
Talk about Lebanon
Albert Oehlen, Christopher Wool et al.
Nur nichts anbrennen lassen. New presentation of the collection (group show)
Kunstmuseum Bonn, Bonn
3 June 2020 – 1 July 2022
After the great survey of painting in the exhibition Jetzt! Young Painting in Germany, the Kunstmuseum Bonn is now turning its attention once again to its own collection, which is being presented in a new way in its many and varied aspects, incorporating acquisitions and donations from recent years as well as permanent loans from private collections (KiCo, Mondstudio, Scharpff-Striebich, etc.).
At the same time, the re-hanging also provides a resonance space for the positions previously shown in Jetzt!, since the Kunstmuseum has defined painting as the focal point of its collection of contemporary art from the very beginning. Thus, a room with paintings from the 1980s provides a retrospective of the emphatic revitalization of painting and at the same time an outlook on current painting projects, for example Tobias Pils and his complex paintings, both reflective and intuitively developed. The spectrum ranges from Informel to Palermo, Gerhard Richter, Sigmar Polke and to Pia Fries, Christopher Wool and Thomas Huber.
Also the pictorial possibilities of photography are discussed, with new acquisitions of photographs by Heidi Specker and Viktoria Binschtok, which were previously shown in solo exhibitions at the Kunstmuseum, and photographs by Claudia Fährenkemper and Hartmut Neumann, who donated a comprehensive body of his work to the museum. The museum also received works by Harald Naegeli, who is not presented here as a sprayer, but with his Urwolken as a creator of utopian drawing spaces.
The video centre is showing the film Unheil (disaster) by John Bock, acquired in 2018, which invents a medieval age full of disturbing rituals. Separate rooms are dedicated to Isa Genzken and Georg Herold, two artists who refuse to be tied down by any kind of media or content, Genzken confidently improvising, Herold with irreverent humour "Nur nichts anbrennen lassen" ("Just don't scorch anything").