Thorsten Brinkmann creates his works out of a continuously growing collection of found objects: From discarded household items, third-hand clothing, and remains of bourgeois interior design through to bulky refuse of all kinds. In his fourth solo exhibition in the gallery FELDBUSCHWIESNER, he presents new self-portraits, still lifes, sculptures and installations from 2012.
The works of the Hamburg-based artist seem to oscillate effortlessly between the different genres and play with our collective visual memory. In particular his still life photographs and self-portraits have characteristics typical of Old Master’s compositions from the 16th and 17th century. For some viewers, the works also trigger associations with Dadaists and Surrealists or Duchamp’s readymades and they see the bizarre-absurd and ironic aspect of Brinkmann’s photographs first and foremost.
Even more so than the earlier works, these new portraits make the stage on which the artist presents the costumed, faceless figures the theme of the image. The settings for “Querle Schlemm”, “Grand Duc Vasario” or “Oskar van Degenball” are conclusive, painterly interiors, which enter into a symbiotic relationship with the figure in the foreground. The contradiction between two and three-dimensionality seems to have been virtually completely dissolved. In Brinkmann’s studio, the discarded items are arranged into installations and transformed into photographs using automatic release. On the other hand, the artist assimilates props from the photographs in sculptures or installation-based environments, in which he embeds his photographs as if they were found objects themselves. The ceiling-high columns made of different objets trouvés that are presented in the exhibition, as well as the portraits and still lifes, thrive on the unconventional pairing of the objects and contexts. As a result, the groups of works are inextricably linked to one another and are mutually dependent. The flow of things is never-ending, everything is constantly becoming.
Thorsten Brinkmann (*1971 in Herne) studied at the Kunsthochschule Kassel in the class of Floris M. Neusüss and at the University of Fine Arts Hamburg in the class of Bernhard J. Blume. He was also a Masters student in the class of Franz E. Walther.
After receiving awards such as the residency scholarship of the Goethe-Institute in Sanaa, Jemen (2009), in 2011 Brinkmann was honoured with the Kunstpreis Finkenwerder and received an artist residency in the Warhol Museum Pittsburgh, USA and in the Parramatta Artist Studios in Sydney, Australia.
His works are represented in renowned collections such as the Museum der Moderne, Salzburg, the Fotomuseum Winterthur, the Kunsthalle zu Kiel and the Caron Collection, France, and have been exhibited in numerous exhibitions in Germany and abroad, most recently in the Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, USA (group show, 2012), in Kunsthaus Hamburg (solo show, 2011), in the Kunsthalle zu Kiel (solo show, 2011), in Museum Morsbroich, Leverkusen (group show, 2011), in Kunstverein Augsburg (solo show, 2011), in Gemeentemuseum, Den Haag (group show, 2010) and in Georg-Kolbe-Museum in Berlin (solo show, 2010).
Parallel to the exhibition in the gallery FELDBUSCHWIESNER, works by Thorsten Brinkmann will be on show in the solo exhibition “Amanecer” in Museo Nacional de San Carlos in Mexico City (20.4 to 29.10.2012) as well as in the group exhibitions “Alice in the Wonderland of Art” in Hamburger Kunsthalle (22.6 to 30.9.2012) and “Facade 2012 – Public Art Projects” in Middelburg in the Netherlands (17.8 to 18.11.2012).