post-title Christian Megert | White Transparency | DIEHL | 29.11.–21.01.2017

Christian Megert | White Transparency | DIEHL | 29.11.–21.01.2017

Christian Megert | White Transparency | DIEHL | 29.11.–21.01.2017

Christian Megert | White Transparency | DIEHL | 29.11.–21.01.2017

until 21.01. | #0916ARTatBerlin | Galerie DIEHL shows from 29th November the exhibition “White Transparency” by the artist Christian Megert. 

In a life journey that has extended from the informal to the immaterial, from the haptic to the aural and the optical, the creative art works of the Swiss artist Christian Megert have exposed and challenged many sensory avenues of everyday phenomenal experience. In the current exhibition the focus is the psychical immateriality of whiteness, a non-colour profoundly associated with issues of transparency, luminosity and inner reflection. Often working within a ZERO-derived semi-minimal tendency Megert opens out the questions of shifting perception and its fragmentation. If his neon light box works of the 1960s, dealt specifically with the luminous objects and spatial depth, works that made the viewer aware of their own corporal position in space before the work, the created works shown in the current exhibition moves this on to the 1970s through to today. In these works again the sources of the artistic material language is that of wood, mirror, and Plexiglas, yet the ‘thingness’ and object status of the work and the sensory pluralities addressed is more reduced than in the 1960s. The viewer is cast into an intensely reflective position, and the experience is psychical and self-reflexive. The chosen use of white is translated from his ZERO associations into questioning the insubstantial ephemerality at the centre of perception as it is experienced. This stands in marked contrast to his first use of ‘whiteness’ as seen in in the mid-to-late 1950s matter-based informal paintings, where the focus was primarily on surface texture and a haptic sense of material presence. Hence after having passed through the distilling filter of his close association with the ZERO movement (1957-66), Megert had by this later date in the 1970s embraced a freer set of opened out perceptual experiences. Less focussed on light-mirror-reflection and the immediate nature of optical movement and the kinetic, the works in this exhibition distil and question that crucial period that sought out (as argued at the time) the so-called validity or otherwise of the dematerialisation and dissolution of the art object. Yet the immateriality of the Zero artists was never that which was transferred into detached abstract conceptions. The works of Megert are not the conceptual executions of ideas, but rather phenomenological extensions of what Merleau-Ponty considered the ongoing primacy of perception. The working through of experimental principles of creative and expanded perception, rather than just enacted tasks of conceptual execution, as you often find in other forms of minimal and conceptual art, characterises the current untitled works exhibited. Megert once again reveals his own path that is neither conceptual nor concrete, and offers the viewer a series of art works that again widens the parameters of variable perception.

The perceived world is the always-presupposed foundation of all rationality, all value, and all existence.
Maurice Merleau-Ponty.

©Mark Gisbourne
1 November 2016

Vernissage: Saturday, 26th November 2016, 6 to 8 p.m.

Exhibition period: Tuesday, 29th November 2016 to Saturday, 21th January 2017

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Image caption: Christian Megert, untitled, 2015, wood, mirror, acrylic, under glass, 163 x 132 x 13 cm

Exhibition Christian Megert – DIEHL – Kunst in Berlin ART at Berlin

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