Taking Stock of the Fleeting – Martin Gesing

Seemingly incidentally, though not unintentionally, for many years now, in addition to the - often large - Lichtspurenbilder (Light Traces Paintings) of rich color nuance on nettle cloth, Sabine Fernkorn has been doing works on A4 paper formats. These form a work group of their own, in the meantime comprising far more than 700 pages. We might sum them up as color drawings, which would be factually correct, but this does not do justice to their multi-layered character. Many of them are landscape pictures in the broadest sense, even though they do not depict any landscape we could associate with them. Nevertheless, the ever-present horizon naturally always sets our imagination off in this direction. Just how much their origins owe to the seasonal changes in nature is demonstrated by their classifications into "Summer Papers", "Autumn Papers", etc.

The artist began working on them in the summer of 2006, whereby there are coherencies with her early works on paper dating from the 1990s. As with her painting, Sabine Fernkorn, for the most part, also works with glazes on these pieces of paper. Using heavily thinned acrylic paints, stains, or inks, she applies these in several layers to the specially prepared, but unprimed and slightly absorbent, paper.

The actual picture idea for these small etudes is only born during the painting process itself, which is begun without a concept and without having any premeditated results in mind. At most, the artist allows herself to be guided by the individual behavior of her painting material or the characteristics of indeterminately placed formations and webs of lines. Small shapes redolent of houses, farms, tents or groups of trees, often lie in the distance, lost in thought, riveting our gaze and our thoughts to them like fixed points, and creating pictorial tensions. Each new page is a further building block in a tested experimental set-up in a series, whose results are never predictable, however and thus, surprise us. Only in an overview or in retrospect do the relationships between the motifs and the contents come about.

Whereas her canvases are more epic depictions, her works on paper are lyrical. Where the canvases are orchestral in nature, the works on paper are small performance pieces. Many seem like picture notations from a stroll on a day that has turned out to be very inspiring, despite or perhaps because of its cloudy and melancholic atmosphere. Overall, their character is more "Nordic", since the climate here is rougher than in her mild and gentle color space paintings. Some of the marks in the works on paper scratch like a hoarse voice in space.

The artist has recorded delightful sensations of impressions and feelings, and at the same time their fleetingness, in expressive picture sequences.