WHERE HAVE ALL THE FLOWERS GONE?
The frost makes a flower, the dew makes a star.
Conny Maier did not originally specialize in painting, yet she felt always drawn to it, creating various de-individualized characters she had invented; with open mouths and jelly feet, captured with vibrant colors in swirling brushstrokes, wandering through canvases often encompassing nature. To focus on Maier’s paintings of flowers and vases is to return -in a way- to the origins of her art: Her paintings are a colorful cosmos shifting between sublime beauty and the grotesque.
For her exhibition at De 11 Lijnen curated by Udo Kittelmann, the artist continues her exploration of nature concentrating on placing bouquets of flower pieces in vases or full blooms without vases and then again vases without colorful flora at all. Still life remains a feature in her series that brings to mind and perhaps leaves us with a question: “Can one paint flowers today?” Looking at Conny Maier paintings, the answer is a definite “yes”.
Ever since the Impressionist artists like Vincent van Gogh adopted flower vases as his subject and Paul Cézanne painted a famous series of still lifes with basket of apples resting on layered tablecloths, and there is of course Claude Monet’s Les Nymphéas series, the still life and painting flowers continuous to remain a popular feature in art movements. Composed of a combination of oil, oil stick and pigments on canvas, Conny Maier ’s paintings created for her first exhibition at the space for contemporary art in Oudenburg, are -one can say- a continuation of this “tradition” and yet at the same time, it is more than that: it is a collection of ideas inspired by and collected from her travels around the world, which Maier first sketches in a notebook and then transforms on canvases –– some are large, others are small depictions of bold and whimsical imagery of life beyond the ordinary.
August 11 – October 22, 2022
De 11 Lijnen
ⓒ Kurt Deruyter