until 29.10.| #3145ARTatBerlin | Galerie ART CRU Berlin presents from 9 September 2021. a solo exhibition of works by artist Helga Goetze (*1922 in Magdeburg, † 2008 in Winsen).
Since the early eighties, the artist has created a vast, fascinating universe of painted pictures, embroidered carpets as well as daily written records. Helga Sophia Goetze was notorious for her “vigil” at the Berlin Memorial Church. There she stood for an hour every day for over 20 years to proclaim her message: “Fucking makes peaceful” – “Fucking is peace”.
A stay with the AAO Commune of the action artist Otto Mühl at the Friedrichshof in Austria brought her to painting. From 1978 to the mid-1980s, she produced around 500-1000 paintings drawn with oil pastels on paper, as well as paintings in gouache: “Self-representations”. Her themes: War, peace, religion, esotericism, psychology, politics, sex, family she brought to the world, initially in painted pictures, later as embroideries.
She created an extensive oeuvre of art historical significance, consisting of paintings, embroideries, poems and literature. She began her embroidery work in 1983: The first embroidery was a “peace flag”. She saw it as her task to capture the symbols of the peace movement, children, nature, herself sitting at the Memorial Church, holding vigil, with needle and thread. An old duvet cover served as the basis. From then on she embroidered large themes: such as the “13 Goddesses” (1993/94, 180x175cm,) or “12 Paths to Direct Knowledge” (12-part Leporello, 1990, 27x185cm). In total, Helga Goetze embroidered more than 300 different-sized carpets from 1983 until her death in 2008. Five large-format carpets have been part of the Collection de l’Art Brut, Lausanne since 2007. In total, five major works of hand-embroidered carpets are in the permanent exhibition. The Stadtmuseum Berlin looks after her artistic – painted and embroidered – legacy.
Helga Goetze was born in Magdeburg in 1922, she grew up in middle-class circumstances. At the age of 20, in 1942, she married a man 12 years her senior. The couple moved from Magdeburg to Hamburg in 1949, where Kurt Goetze was employed at a bank. They had seven children together – five girls and two boys. The marriage worked until Helga was allowed to spend a night with Giovanni, a mutual holiday acquaintance, on a holiday in Sicily with her husband’s consent. After this experience, she broke out of her bourgeois housewife existence. She lived in Hamburg in a shared flat with free sexuality and communal property, she wrote a book: “Housewife of the Nation or Germany’s Super Sow ?” – Zeugnisse eines Ausbruchs, ed. Volker Elis Pilgrim, 1973.
She also received international attention with her provocative appearances, theories and poems, was invited on talk shows and was “the scandal of the year” in 1976 when she stripped naked on TV. “What do I have to be ashamed of? My body is my church, through it I feel and breathe.”
In 1978 she moved to Berlin-Kreuzberg. In the beginning, she stood at the entrance of the TU Mensa, holding out small pieces of paper with her messages to people, or had them hanging around her neck in the form of homemade signs. Rosa von Praunheim made the film “Rote Liebe” (Red Love), in which she played the leading role. From 1983 until shortly before her death on 29 January 2008, she had her place at the Gedächtniskirche. From there she shouted to passers-by: “Fuck/love – the orgasm of the goddess is peace”, “Who perceives the sexual distress of young men and women over 30?”. She lived in Charlottenburg from 1982 until her death.
Helga Goetze wrote about 3,000 poems. She described herself as the “greatest living poet”. The poems, as well as the more than 30,000 typewritten DIN A 4 pages with daily records of her experiences, her reading, her insights, are an invaluable moral portrait of our time. This literary legacy is in the Women’s Feminist Archive, FFBIZ, Berlin.
Vernissage: Thursday, 9th September 2021, 6:00 pm.
Reading: Friday, 8 October 2021, 6:00 p.m.
Karin Pott reads from “Holidays in Sicily”, Helga SOPHIA Goetze wrote III Testament (Being a Witness): To the Mothers in 1983. In the middle part of the work, which is over 100 pages long, she describes her own experiences of the demon of the moment in Sicily. Karin Pott presents this unpublished work, reads some passages from it: LA DONNA DEL MONDO, as well as poems.
Exhibition dates: Thursday, 9th September until Friday, 29th October 2021to the gallery
Exhibition Helga Goetze – Galerie ART CRU | Zeitgenössische Kunst in Berlin | Contemporary Art | Exhibitions Berlin Galleries | ART at Berlin