Her most recent photo and installation works deal with perspective, perception, transformation, and illusion, establishing a connection between the view to the inside and the view to the outside. The starting point of Leykauf’s works displayed in the exhibition is formed by the documentation of landscapes and the engagement with the landscape genre in art, literature and science. How does the landscape become an expression and a part of human existence, especially of the human body? What takes place is a return to painting with photographic means.
Leykauf uses the painted display window of the gallery as the basis for the multi-part work titled cliché verre – Mehringplatz, 2018. The technique of the photogram developed in the 19th century became well-known in the 20th century especially through László Moholy-Nagy, who with his wife Lucia Moholy laid the theoretical and experimental foundations of this new art form in the 1920s. The photograms hanging in the gallery were exposed directly on the window pane by the illuminated Mehringplatz and are an unmediated representation of the space. The “negative” painting created through subtraction is transformed into its positive in the darkroom. A new landscape emerges, with the body and gestures of the artist simultaneously inscribed in the picture.
The artist uses the reproduction of a painting in a book as the point of departure for a new artwork. On the one hand, the medium changes from oil on canvas to print on paper, on the other, a shift in scale occurs, something that often plays a key role in Alexandra Leykauf’s oeuvre. The two photographs, Zwei Pflanzen (Lucian Freud) – Dessauer Str. (2016) and Cumberland Farm (Ben Nicholson) –Dessauer Str. (2018), depict this shift. The artist gauges her personal surroundings using her telephone and places them in a direct relationship to the reproduction of the painting. The respective catalog page is thus enlarged until the work appears in its original size. The smartphone displays the discrepancy between reality and reproduction, allowing viewers to set themselves in relation to it. The gaze of the discoverer, one of the classic, heteronormatively charged perspectives that can be found particularly in landscape painting, is connected to the interior, which was traditionally reserved for the woman and mother. Role patterns are visualized and reveal how the viewer reads culturally informed images from the perspective of her or his own biography.