ARTISTS / Contemporary art
Volker Blumkowski

The open secret
© Volker Blumkowski /

Volker Blumkowski

Das offene Geheimnis / The open secret, 2018

Oil paint on canvas
140 × 150 cm

signed and dated
(BLUMKV/M 52)

price upon request
previous work
17 / 18
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Photo: Frank Kleinbach, Stuttgart

An open secret is literally one that is not one. In the painting of the same name by Volker Blumkowski, it is clearly visible. But it is by no means ready to reveal the secret of its existence: A seasoned male figure with a visored cap and a shirt worn casually over his trousers peers almost fearfully around the corner of a presumably thin wall to look after a floating network of lines. Since the space in the background is nebulous and undefined, one cannot grasp the lineature from the mind. The mystery, open and yet closed to the mind, can be interpreted as a reference to art - think of Willi Baumeister's theoretical work on "The Unknown in Art". Here, however, the question of art is multiplied: if on the left there is a non-objective image on a gray background, the rest - a figurative depiction against a beige background - becomes a counterplay that is not revealed by the fact that it is a concrete person we see, especially since their position of grip on the wall undermines the proportions of man to wall and thus the pictorial logic. Ultimately, the depiction is just as mysterious as the other motifs. As is well known - according to Paul Klee - art does not reproduce the visible, but makes visible. Not more, but also not less. But this is by all means an open secret.
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