In No Fake, Johannes Nagel reverences his ultimate expression, which is a place of truth and tangible, tactile presence. Pure gesture is frozen precisely at the interface between mental design and practical realisation on the material itself – where consciousness meets the world. His works can at times be perceived as provocatively disharmonious, with a fragile equilibrium and bursting with flaws and cracks which he purposely assumes and accentuates. Nevertheless their presence is anything but awkward. Ever aiming for more singularity, now he flirts at some level with the graffiti subtone, experimenting with stenciled shapes and multicolor airbrush glazes that mimic the street artist's spray can. The (de)constructions ostentate gravity-defying bridges, incredibly narrow tubes, a paradoxical coexistence of delicate and exaggerated features. Shape-wise he aspires for a distorted rotational symmetry and a vague vase outline that revolution around its axis. This is all fruit of the journey of his arms, hands and fingers working from the inside out. Excavating worms advancing into the unknown, leaving the ridges of knuckles and nails petrified on the object's rough skin – a result of an act of raw intimacy.
What is the role of vessels today when virtually all processes have been mastered, all guidelines have been written and mass production perfection was achieved? Johannes Nagel couldn't be less worried about utilitarian aspects – he rhetorically questions containers instead. While exploring their archetypal form into open-ended and spontaneous executions he implodes both the historic and contemporary meanings of the term „vase“. Nagel is an artist who perseveres in new ways of translating kinesics into ceramic reality. He creates vessels as subtle imprints of the body, balancing unorthodox and formal aspects of his medium with great success. Through an inherent processual metalanguage, his works are to some extent carriers of an aesthetical sense on how we perceive life as in the symptoms of the VUCA world – volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous. Unpretentiously they expose our increasing inability to grasp the world. The result is the kind of beauty that one can find with resilient eyes.