SCHLUEMBERGER + THE PANTHERS – New Paintings by Anna Schuleit Haber
The German Consulate General Presents:
Enlarge image The Panthers (51). In which the panthers of a traveling circus, in the hands of the mayor of Cracow, act expectedly unexpectedly. by Anna Schuleit Haber, Mixed Media on Paper, 30 x 22”, 2014 (© Anna Schuleit Haber) Schluemberger + The Panthers, a solo exhibition of new paintings by Anna Schuleit Haber. The show includes thirty-six new works featuring the imagery and motifs that Schuleit Haber has developed in dialogue with Thomas Bernhard’s darkly comic fiction. Each painting is inspired by one of Bernhard's short stories in an ongoing series that began in 2012 and will continue through 2015. This is the debut exhibition of the series.
Anna Schuleit Haber's intricately composed abstract paintings explore and evoke Bernhard’s long-standing obsession with intrigue, political corruption, trauma, and urban mystery. The absurdity of life that is present in the stories is further amplified in the bold visual vocabulary of the paintings, especially when seen in context with each other. The approach of seriality has been a characteristic of Schuleit Haber’s work for some time. In this series, each painting leads to the next in an approach that conceptually resembles an abstracted re-assembly of the book of stories that the paintings were originally inspired by.
“I realized a few paintings into this series that Thomas Bernhard couldn’t tear himself away from the repetition of his strange characters. Most of them are men, and most of them are tragic figures. In response, my paintings went rather quickly from more delicate, drawing-based works to painterly explosions. Thomas Bernhard's stories made my head hurt the way the news does, every day, and that ache, that throbbing, circular masculinity, has made its way into this series. It is there, one can see his ache—mixed in with mine, which is a little different, less dark probably—in all of these paintings."
Throughout the series, the paintings reflect the density and inconclusiveness of the stories without illustrating them. The painter’s vocabulary seems oddly in tune with the writer’s. But while Thomas Bernhard ends each of his stories without warning, always abruptly, in this series Schuleit Haber appears to provide a longer breath, a chance for a more unhurried encounter with the material. The resulting paintings are as layered and colorful, as they are strangely, mysteriously derived. In fact, over the course of three dozen paintings, the brushwork and color palette grow in intensity on all fronts. By no means an automatic work, this series of paintings is heading in a mischievous, even hypnotic direction. Schuleit Haber engages with each of Bernhard’s stories on her own terms, encouraging the possibility of a deeper viewing of the stirring, disturbingly contemporary content and narrative behind the work.
Anna Schuleit Haber is a German-born painter and installation artist who moved to the US as a teenager. She studied painting at the Rhode Island School of Design, creative writing / book arts at Dartmouth College, and was named a MacArthur Fellow for work that has “conceptual clarity, beauty, and compassion.” This is her second solo-exhibition of paintings in NYC. Schuleit Haber's works are included in major private collections in the US and Europe. Forthcoming exhibitions include a site-specific series of remotely created daily drawings in the Dartmouth Biennial 2015, and a collaborative alphabet for which she will be the embedded artist of a daily newspaper for 26 consecutive days. The work in this exhibition has been made possible, in part, by artist fellowships from the Bogliasco Foundation, The Hermitage, NYFA, and the MacArthur Foundation.
Location and time:
German Consulate General
871 United Nations Plaza
New York, NY
Tuesday, December 2, 2014 – Friday, January 2, 2015
Monday – Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m,
Closed on weekends and on December 24, 25, 26 (Christmas), December 31 (New Year's Eve) and January 1, 2015 (New Year's Day)
Tuesday, December 2, 2014 from 6:30 p.m.- 8:30 p.m.
Admission is free, RSVP is required for opening reception.