Clara Gesang-Gottowt washes my retina with her paintings. In everyday life with digitally generated images, worlds and pixels, her work is almost like a purification bath. Today, art is increasingly being reduced to and communicated through digital channels. The encounter with this type of painting becomes as necessary as having to experience nature and the regeneration of plant life every spring.
Gesang-Gottowt masters the materials when her imagery is built. At first glance it’s the thin layers that makes one perceive the canvases as being illuminated or constructed as light boxes. In front of this type of art we encounter yet again our memories and current state, stained by our experiences and reading of the works. At a closer look and when time for art is put in–the details, materials and spatial light begin to shape our experience. The structure of the canvas appears and the paint’s movements covering the surface are enhanced.
Gesang-Gottowt has expressed difficulty in coming up with titles for her works, the concern being that it can lock the spectator. I see the titles as suggestions, rather than rigid truths. We are invited to look and reflect on a painting's title, execution and color in relationship to ourselves and the other exhibited pieces. To paint has also been a way for Gesang-Gottowt to understand how she wants to live her life and to look at her surroundings. The title of the exhibition Vind Öga, translated into Wind Eye, which is play on a Swedish word for window, gives us a peek through those windows that paintings are, into the artist's studio and work.
Several of the pieces are almost veiled by a pattern a grid, which creates a certain distance to the otherwise luminous surfaces. It gives the feeling of not revealing all of the details and glow of the outer layers, we must return to the works more than once to fully take part in Gesang-Gottowt's intentions and thoughts.
The exhibition’s smallest canvas, suggests a hand that acts as both as a greeting and a key. It’s Clara's hand that is depicted–in the making and disintegrating simultaneously. It invites equally to reflection as it manifests the artist's presence in the paintings and in the gallery.
In this, we must see Gesang-Gottowt's work and the exhibition Vind Öga as a part of a larger exploration and journey where we are temporarily spectators and fellow passengers.
Stockholm, May 2019