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What You Need to Know: Curated by art historian and writer Christian Malycha, “Accesso” at Naples Alfonso Artiaco gallery brings together works by three generations of German artists, namely André Butzer, Albert Oehlen, David Schutter, Jana Schröder, Raphaela Simon, and Ulrich Wulff. The exhibition is essentially broken into six solo exhibitions, and the artists have arranged their works within individual rooms in the gallery. Passing from the expressive freedom of Albert Oehlen’s works through to the contemporary visions of Jana Schröder and Raphaela Simon, the exhibition offers an open conversation about shifting artistic approaches across generations.
Why We Like It: The exhibition is rooted in the belief that artworks allow us to better access ourselves (whether we like it or not) and that each artist in their own way presents a space questioning the ways in which we perceive the world. In Oehlen’s Ö”Norm, the artist presents a fragmented space whose pictorial elements hover together tenuously, as planes and gestures blur into one another. In the work of André Butzer, on the other hand, color, line, subject operate together, seemingly inseparably. Jana Schröder’s works are experiments in visual accumulation—coming from a scriptural and calligraphic tradition, the artist creates an excess of painterly gestures that stop any literal legibility—text becomes a kind of texture. What these varied approaches share in common is a desire to challenge the viewer to look deeper and more intentionally.
What the Gallery Says: “Works of art—be it a painting, a watercolor or a drawing—are peculiar things. They offer, to quote the late Umberto Eco, ‘l’accesso al proprio cuore’—immediate access to one’s own heart. They allow for immediate access to the heart of an artist as well as to our own hearts. No matter the temperaments, they are there, if we agree with them or not. Sometimes, the artwork causing us the biggest headache might eventually even be the one to help us see the clearest and come to terms with our longings, experiences, and our lives.”