We will buy you
The Galerie Davide Di Maggio presents the first individual exhibition in Berlin of Austrian artist Andreas Leikauf.
In contemporary paintings we often come across the language of writing, that may play different roles and have a number of significances. For instance the writing on the flat stretches of Ed Ruscha evoke places and situations characteristic of the American cultural mythology, both in the real landscape and in the imagery of movies. The painting of Christopher Wool, for instance, is simply writing and it is precisely to this terse and extreme style that he owes his fortune. Raymond Pettibon on the contrary establishes a dialogue between images and words where, however, the distinctive element is above all provided by the icons and the atmosphere they evoke,
These three great artists, by no coincidence all of them American, represent interesting precedents for the work of Andreas Leikauf. But the Austrian artist is not interested in a writing that becomes calligraphy, decoration and graphic rendition; rather, he chooses the simplest typographical models, a block type that ls conventional and anonymous yet fundamental, to the point that no painting by him lacks a writing, a sentence with a full meaning, a slogan or a title. And what is written in these paintings? Do sentences and words mean something?
Some of them seem to be taken from songs, in other more banaal but no less striking ones we find messages of the kind printed on t-shirts, flyers, made to be consumed quickly, and forgotten just as quickly.
The artist therefore selects, underscores, puts in inverted commas, notes but invents little, and this should by no means be understood in a negative sense. The painter of the year 2000 remixes, cuts and glues to evoke an atmosphere where we seem to recognize familiar sounds and images.
And it is precisely in this that the concept of Andreas Leikauf is rooted: to select information and use it to define à formal world by means of which images that eliminate every superfluous aRd accidental detail are rendered.