Flowing abstraction at the Eden Art Space Gallery | 11 January 2020
Arterial Network Seychelles has announced that the first art exhibition of 2020 to be held at the Eden Art Space Gallery at Eden Plaza will feature the work of Birgitt Lübkemann, a German artist now resident on La Digue.
The title of the show – ‘In Sinus’ – refers to a condition of healthy rhythm because it is the heartbeat of the natural environment that remains the artist’s principal inspiration.
Although Birgitt has exhibited regularly in group shows at the gallery, this is the first time that she has been invited to fill most of the available exhibition space. Raymond Dubuisson, who lives and paints on Praslin, will also be exhibiting a small number of new canvases which, although more figurative than Birgitt’s compositions, complement her use of colour and form. The gallery hopes that Raymond will hold his own one man show in the near future.
Birgitt has created more than 80 new works specifically for this show, with 33 of them exhibited together in the form of a ‘mother wall’ which the artist intends to be seen as one piece of art. This massive installation will take up the entire back wall of the gallery and will be replicated to a smaller scale in a tabletop version, with visitors encouraged to create their ideal arrangement of the individual works.
Birgitt Lübkemann’s ‘signature’ approach to painting is to layer representations of organic forms which both complement and suggest each other. Her compositions mature from often small beginnings and it is frequently a tiny detail which, once the work is fully realised, provides both the focal point and the title of the painting. These works take time to develop and represent not only the artist’s observation and imagination but also the sum of her life experiences gleaned within practical and spiritual contexts.
Earlier works by the artist featured organic forms interpreted from nature and created with smooth and blended brushwork. More recent works demonstrate a new direction for Birgitt, with more expressive gestural brush strokes taking centre stage. Many of the smaller canvases owe their impact to the kind of dramatic painting that would normally be seen on much larger compositions. The artist’s palette has also altered, with darker hues and fewer works where a limited range of hues is deployed.
Although abstract, the work reflects its origins – the island of La Digue – as well as the artist’s interest in the rhythm of the natural world. The repetitive pace and cycle of the natural environment finds expression not only through Birgitt’s canvases but also side projects such as a short film of the ocean which utilises a soundtrack of the artist’s brush moving over canvas. This makes explicit the process of responding with intuition and imagination to an observed natural world and gives us further insight into the concepts and processes which are the foundation of this exhibition.
The value of intuition, which exists alongside more conscious and determined mark-making in these paintings, is something that Birgitt Lübkemann is happy to acknowledge as a key component in her creative practice. She had this to say about her working process:
“Each colour, each brush is chosen intuitively. With each layer (of paint) the form becomes clearer, gently curving outlines are revealed, almost organic shapes that I seem to have touched before – somewhere along my way.”
‘IN SINUS’ New paintings by Birgitt Lübkemann opens on January 18 and runs until February 14.
Admission is FREE and all are welcome to view the exhibition at the Eden Art Space, Eden Plaza, Eden Island, Mahé. The gallery is open Monday until Saturday from 10:30 until 18:00 (Saturday closure is at 15:00).
Contributed by Arterial Network Seychelles
Photo sources: Arterial Network Seychelles