Anne Hefer




In 1985 the charismatic Joseph Beuys wrote a manifesto announcing his radically new understanding of art. According to him painting had become obsolete, even downright a mistake. It was through happenings, installations and political action that Beuys treaded new paths within the performing arts. So far so good.

But here is what I aim for: to remember and to bring the present into my paintings at the same time. This also includes visual memories. Sometimes I just want to pluck out a piece of one of Guardi’s skies and insert it into a painting. Or I enjoy playing with all the different codes of sea and seafaring in the paintings of C. D. Friedrich. My personal means of expression to achieve this is only to paint. It is the beauty of oil painting, which, charged with tradition, still has not tapped its full potential, and which still urges me on and keeps inspiring me.

Every painting is a trip to the unknown, a possibility of transforming thoughts and emotions. It is, thus, in the play of colours that reality changes into fiction, the devised — into reality.

For me there is no doubt: painting is still alive — even after 1985! No concepts for me, please, no templates. Mind and heart and hand: an interplay of these elements brings my paintings to life.

«Let us go then! Off to see open spaces, where we may seek what is ours, distant, remote though it be!» says Hölderlin. And that is exactly my intention: to keep a free view into open spaces.