Oliver Lanz – Future Days (Works)
Oliver Lanz – Future Days Press Release
Thomas Erben is pleased to present the first solo exhibition of the Berlin-based German painter Oliver Lanz (b. 1971). On view will be large, colorful, primarily abstract paintings which are deliberately installed on the walls of the gallery space. Future Days references the 1973 song of the same title by Can (an influential Cologne based experimental rock group), simultaneously referring to the psychedelic culture informing Lanz’s palette and the futuristic subtext of his work.
Lanz is a graduate of the Kunstakademie Duesseldorf and Hochschule der Bildenden Kuenste, Berlin. He is the recipient of the esteemed German Max Ernst Award for painting in 2002, and the prestigious Swiss Vordemberge-Gildewart Award in 2003.
A great colorist, Lanz’s mostly large canvases are an adept combination of matter, surface, and pigment. He arrives at some of his formations, brush in hand, through an interplay of intuitive action and reaction; others more calculatedly incorporate unrecognizably enlarged line drawings based on images from various media sources or reduced figurative elements.
The utilization of oils, acrylics, or silver paint allow Lanz to create such varied effects as accumulations of translucent washes, vibrant depths of color, and occasional muting silvery expanses. His application of a broad formal vocabulary is rhythmically sure and generously precise.
While each of his works functions individually with it’s own set of unique variables, their panoramic installation in grid-like structures allows for a non-stylistic yet complimentary formalistic reading. But more questions as to subject or intent are raised, and an accommodating openness of potential readings is achieved.
The Vordemberge-Gildewart Award jury stated that Lanz “…is successful in placing the visual attitude of today’s digital culture into the traditional medium of painting”. With each individual piece functioning as a specific set of data, his grouped paintings combine to form networks of open-ended completeness.
Oliver Lanz’s work was included in Across the Universe (with Jason Paradis and Dorothea Rockburne) at Marcus Ritter, 2002, and After Matisse Picasso at P.S. 1, 2003, both in New York. He also had solo exhibitions at Daniel Schmidt, Cologne, 2003, and Ritter/Zamet, London, 2004. A Monograph edited by Uta Grosenick (co-author, Art at the End of the Millenium, 1999/2000 and Art Now, 2002) is forthcoming.