Beyond Mimesis [memory]: Veronika Dirnhofer - Artist Talk
14.01.2014 17:30h
Beyond Mimesis [memory]: Veronika Dirnhofer - Artist Talk
Beyond Mimesis is a discourse platform investigating contemporary painting conditions curated by Christian Bazant-Hegemark - beyondmimesis.tumblr.com

About the artist:

Veronika Dirnhofer’s recent paintings continue her exploration between the polarities of uber-saturated high-frequency abstractions, and desaturated, nearly monochromatic canvases. For some time now, Dirnhofer is incorporating external materials to fragment the canvas space further, adding additional layers of reflection and meta-reflection to what seems like collages of thought. The pieces seem to act as memory fragments, with memory being one Dirnhofer’s recurring themes.
Dirnhofer’s monochromatic paintings remind of Helene Weigel’s mute scream in Brecht’s Mother Courage - their alleged silence creating a strength not easily reached by colorful saturation.
When text was originally a tool to overcome the distrust towards images[1], Dirnhofer’s current work can be understood as an act of distrust towards text, enforced by her decontextualizing use of cut-out newspaper fragments or handwritten transcriptions, some of which are later made unreadable.
In Crisis of Linearity, Vilém Flusser writes that

"The alphanumeric code forces writing thought to submit to speaking thought, and if the code becomes dominant, all remaining modes of thought become impoverished [...]." [2]

Seen this way, Dirnhofer’s work might be an effort to find a language against the predominance of text, and thus against the dominance of any medium really. Ultimately then, Dirnhofer’s work can be seen as a metaphor against any (medium of) dominance, with the motivation to distrust, the “trust to distrust” being one of her major tools.

(text by Christian Bazant-Hegemark)

Painting: "Zum Rufen gehört das Hören", Mischtechnik, 180 x145cm
[1] “The process of lining up pictograms began when trust in pictures as guides for orientations in the world started to diminish. [...] The alphabet was invented to clearly articulate language (to de-mythologize it) and then to use language to critique the imagination (to de-magicize the images). Initially, the alphabet teaches us to speak clearly and only then it teaches us to critique our imagination. It teaches us to think un-mythically and to act un-magically.” (Vilém Flusser, Crisis of Linearity (Translation from German by Adelheid Mers, first published in Boot Print Volume 1/Issue 1 - http://bootscontemporaryartspace.org/downloads/BP1_1.pdf, 2007), p. 19-20)
[2] Ibid, p. 20
Thelemangasse 4/1
1170 ,Wien (Österreich)