Frank Nitsche at Galería Pelaires

Artist: Frank Nitsche

Exhibition title: Backwards Ahead

Venue: Galería Pelaires, Mallorca, Spain

Date: March 20 – May 31, 2021

Photography: ©Roberto Ruiz, ©Grimalt de Blanch / all images copyright and courtesy of the artist and Galería Pelaires

Galeria Pelaires is pleased to present the second solo show by German artist Frank Nitsche at the gallery.

Frank Nitsche uses a sophisticated pictorial language, an abstraction characterised by shapes that he creates by overlapping layers of paint and intersecting lines to find the desired design. Geometric shapes and lines are arranged in abstract (and sometimes aerodynamic) compositions that are partly inspired by Constructivism and that might remind you of the blueprints used in architecture or design or even of computer programmes. However, despite the constant allusion to contemporary designs (computers, mobiles, trainers, etc.), it is not possible to refer to any example in particular, since all of them intermingle with each other and result in indecipherable shapes. Based on flat shapes that the artist usually distorts and interweaves and considering that he does not use any sort of computer support and yet deliberately gives you the impression of something industrial and technological, Nitsche produces his paintings in an artisanal, thorough, and corrected way. The evocative and synthetic nature of his works hides social reflections and criticism. He applies a unique pictorial logic when developing each one of his works, as according to him there is no seriation, and the formats are not even subject to standardisation. Nitsche fully dives into the painting process once a shape has been added, reacting to it in the subsequent stages, erasing existing parts, painting, adding, erasing other parts, painting again and so on until he obtains a structure with the tension, rigour and dynamic he is looking for.

Some of his large-size works are compositions that feature details he has obtained from his personal collection of strange and absurd images. The artist’s visual archive plays a key role throughout the entire creation process since it helps him find his own language. The media, pop culture and consumption trends inspire Nitsche’s ideology, which he condenses and arranges very carefully.

Nitsche has selected small pieces for this new show, in the line of his last body of work.

BACKWARDS AHEAD

For a year now, the world has been in screen mode. We see close people, distant lands-capes and art framed on the scale of the screen diagonal. What is important is in the middle, the pandemic teaches us. Bodies reach up to the shoulder. Nature is best sur-veyed in its entirety. We don’t notice it, but we lose the sense for details, the standing whisker, the obstacle in the screen axis or the unevenness in a surface.

Frank Nitsche has never been a painter of superficial current affairs. This would not be possible because his paintings do not come to an end quickly. In the course of their crea-tion, they often change their orientation. Sometimes it is only at the very end, on the nail in the studio, that it is decided what will be above and below. Above all, their surfaces are display boards of an incomparable disinterest in haste and clarity. Overgrinding, correc-tion, line intensification and overpainting luxuriously alter beyond recognition what might seem convincing at a casual glance from the outside, but in the painter’s constructive lo-gic is only suitable as a condensing layering. Each painting contains images lost through reworking. They enrich the panels and cannot be transmitted to any social medium in this world. Nitsche is a painter whose memory extends over thousands of canvases and who, perhaps for this reason, has such nimble freedom in modelling ever new pictorial spaces in which we can assume all kinds of things —architectures, bodies, characters, or objects from the world of pop and consumption— without ever being able to prove such a reference.

In his new series, the quiet absurdity of all the shapes that surround us becomes even more imperceptibly tangible than usual. Calligraphies emerge from gently curved surface folds or push past lines as if through cut edges into the picture. Surfaces move irrita-tingly close to the edge of the canvas like pale ghosts of all the frames that are pushed back and forth every day by the soldiers of digital image processing in their manipulation laboratories. Nitsche balances the focused world of electronic signs out of the simple-minded middle. He shows riches in rectangular structures that are aware of their cropped nature. He builds geometries that sometimes seem almost empty, but that we end up no-ticing after the third or fourth glance. Just turn around. The picture is following you. There was nothing to see, but it draws us back. This conundrum is about the edge. It doesn’t exist. It is an illusion. The world of framing is nothing but a dream. While this text is being created in the window of a word processor, perhaps behind the author’s back, the frame in which he finds himself is shifting. He slips off centre and does not notice. In each of Frank Nitsche’s new, slim-format paintings, the visible figure imperceptibly strives to another place or has a subtly opposing, intangible alternative. The longer we are enclosed in digital spaces, the greater the satisfaction of knowing this.

-Gerrit Gohlke, Berlin, March 2021





Frank Nitsche, Backwards Ahead, 2021, exhibition view, Galería Pelaires, Mallorca

Frank Nitsche, Backwards Ahead, 2021, exhibition view, Galería Pelaires, Mallorca

Frank Nitsche, Backwards Ahead, 2021, exhibition view, Galería Pelaires, Mallorca

Frank Nitsche, Backwards Ahead, 2021, exhibition view, Galería Pelaires, Mallorca

Frank Nitsche, Backwards Ahead, 2021, exhibition view, Galería Pelaires, Mallorca

Frank Nitsche, Backwards Ahead, 2021, exhibition view, Galería Pelaires, Mallorca

Frank Nitsche, Backwards Ahead, 2021, exhibition view, Galería Pelaires, Mallorca

Frank Nitsche, Backwards Ahead, 2021, exhibition view, Galería Pelaires, Mallorca

Frank Nitsche, Backwards Ahead, 2021, exhibition view, Galería Pelaires, Mallorca

Frank Nitsche, BBP-09-2021, 2021, Óleo sobre tela, 30 x 18 cm

Frank Nitsche, SPO-14-2021, 2021, Óleo sobre tela, 24 x 18 cm

Frank Nitsche, SBB-05-2021, 2021, Óleo sobre tela, 31 x 20 cm

Frank Nitsche, BTB-16-2021, 2021, Óleo sobre tela, 27 x 20 cm

Frank Nitsche, BSD-11-2021, 2021, Óleo sobre tela, 30 x 18 cm

Frank Nitsche, SBH-04-2021, 2021, Óleo sobre tela, 25 x 19 cm

Frank Nitsche, GOW-08-2021, 2021, Óleo sobre tela, 27 x 20 cm

Frank Nitsche, CAB-10-2021, 2021, Óleo sobre tela, 21 x 18 cm

Frank Nitsche, TPS-06-2021, 2021, Óleo sobre tela, 26 x 18 cm

Frank Nitsche, BOL-12-2021, 2021, Óleo sobre tela, 22 x 18 cm

Frank Nitsche, WIB-17-2021, 2021, Óleo sobre tela, 25 x 18 cm

Frank Nitsche, THB-07-2021, 2021, Óleo sobre tela, 26 x 20 cm

Frank Nitsche, BBH-03-2021, 2021, Óleo sobre tela, 24 x 19 cm

Frank Nitsche, COX-13-2021, 2021, Óleo sobre tela, 30 x 18 cm

Frank Nitsche, RUL-15-2021, 2021, Óleo sobre tela, 21 x 19 cm

Frank Nitsche, BSM-02-2021, 2021, Óleo sobre tela, 28 x 19 cm

Frank Nitsche, BTA-01-2021, 2021, Óleo sobre tela, 36 x 21 cm