The working process of Kerstin HELLER requires some attention to reach a possible key of understanding. Not that her paintings are indescribable or surreal, nor only target the well-informed public (quite the opposite, the children are crazy about it). No, but they have this particularity to have a massive weight.
The weight of their substance first, the oil, profusely abundant on the canvas. The weight of the countless accumulated painting sessions too. The weight of the time past waiting to dry to finally solidify and live. But also the anxious weight of a regular and dreadful verdict: 'to be erased', or 'to be cancelled', which sometime leads to 'must be destructed' !
For to Kerstin Heller, the slightest line's durability drawn on the canvas hangs to a thread: the one of the tightrope walker, which can drop down its subject to the oblivion gaps without even trembling.
This is not the artist's technique, but rather her major process to get such a controlled mastery in her work. The perpetual reconsideration of her gestures, even if it means repeating them 10 or 20 times, until their impulse's origin reaches the required balance, and finally ends up on the canvas like a revelation. Just as a darts player would only tolerate to harpoon the center of the target, all the other attempts will be annihilated.
Her paintings are therefore characterized by an overlapping of layers, often griping some stuck China paper. They sometimes let glimpse the sediment of a previously condemned gesture, and here lies the main force of her work: any act will be made registered and visible. A massive weight left by an exhibited soul belonging to the strata of the past.
Heller's artwork is somehow elementary, fundamental, with imprints borrowed from emotional fluctuations and their consecutive arbitrary penalties. The contrast in the choice of tints is raw and frank, the features determined, the themes essentials. Regarding the reproduced patterns, they are unsteady, naive and instinctive. As vacillating clouds during their mutation, we cannot help from anticipating their shape in action. They are living patterns, fed by the different grazes occurred throughout their composition.
Together with the persistent emanation of this piled up paint made of dense texture in relief, the works of Kerstin Heller turn out into real objects during their creation. They have to be approached, studied, felt, smelt and touched in order to finally be contemplated.
While made of omniscience, they recall us to a pure innocence.
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