• First Open | Post-War and Cont auction at Christies

    Sale 12724

    First Open | Post-War and Contemporary Art | London

    29 September 2016, London, South Kensington

  • Lot 45

    Kerstin Brätsch (B. 1979)

    Untitled

    Estimate

    Kerstin Brätsch (B. 1979)
    Untitled
    oil on mylar
    141 ½ x 41 1/8in. (359.5 x 104.4cm.)
    Executed in 2010


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    ‘Having it both ways (or more ways than that) is central to Brätsch’s practice, which is as much a process of reflexive undoing as of doing. A pragmatic rationale might suggest itself: that since artists are now encouraged to pump out content, nothing might be more desirable than perpetual collaboration, a process of creating sparks and volatility’ (M. Herbert, ‘Mint Condition,’ Frieze, 12 November 2015)

    Kerstin Brätsch’s wide-ranging output rejects the sanctity of gallery walls: her vibrant abstractions blur the line between painting and object, occupying whatever space they wish. She, too, refuses to be pinned down, endlessly collaborating, destabilising and refashioning her own practice. The two present untitled works (both 2010) feature her signature scalloped brushstroke, applied by hand but coolly digital in gradient. Snaking in greens, pinks and yellows over the slick transparency of mylar – an industrial plastic film – they result in what she calls ‘ghosts.’ These works, she explains, are ‘oil paintings, done by hand, and many of the motifs are inspired by digital effects and digital brushstrokes, if you will. You can hang ghosts however you like. On one you’ll see through the plastic, so the paint will have a fattened, produced appearance. The opposite side reveals the brushwork, the production’ (K. Brätsch, quoted in M. Cattelan, ‘Kerstin Brätsch: Vendo Tutto, in Flash Art, October 2011, p. 71). Aesthetically confounding but obstinately beautiful, these artistic doppelgängers are a vibrant vision of the postmodern potential of painting in an age of virtual appearances.

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    Provenance

    Société, Berlin.
    Acquired from the above by the present owner in 2010.