REGGIE VOIGTLÄNDER





Chinese ink paintings

ongoing series

I was raised with lots of importance to nature and art. Born in Germany, Wuppertal, which means valley of the river 'Wupper', mountains are my first home, as it were. Weekend activities were hikes in nature. Traveling with the 'Schwebebahn' (the monorail that runs for 13 km through the city) my eyes followed the river and life along it, passing under.

Because my mother was originally Dutch, we traveled there regularly. Looking through the car window, I saw the changing landscape pass me by and the mountains slowly settle down, until there was but flat land, with a forest strip here and there. On the way back, the giants would slowly get off their knees as the mountains came back into sight and my life lay in their green forest arms again. Until I was six, when I was finally taken to my mother's country. Now there was field, heath, swamp and forest. The repeated traveling between the two places in my early youth made me develop an understanding of space and place, with all specifics and the connected whole. Traveling is an essential part of my work. During these journeys, big or small and the interactions with my surrounding I connect to the world or the universe itself. My work reflects both on time and the timeless.

Drawing and strolling in the woods were my favourite activities, living in a small Dutch suburb close to nature. And still, my ink paintings are characterised by landscape scenes or elements therefrom. Painting in and after nature is a direct way to connect and interact with life. People subsequently seem to have become disconnected from nature. My intention is to treat landscape as a multifaceted entity. Sometimes landscapes seem to harbour emotions and desires. Sometimes they express a painful reality, created by mankind. My paintings are translations of what presents itself to me. I combine the actual, material world, as well as the psychological or imaginary. I want to appeal to an intuitive way of perception, offering a way to connect from a personal perspective.

During the painting process, I look for a way to shape the unformatted into a fitting visual code. I work out a strategy to emphasise on the relation between the revealed natural processes, cultural realities and the way in which we experience and shape an understanding about it. A work should speak for itself and at the same time leave room for personal associations. I combine intuition and experiment with concept and although I work out series, I don't like to repeat in endless variations. Each work has its own evolution and narrative.

Although I am to a certain point inspired by traditional (Chinese) paintings and adopt techniques, I developed a distinctive ink painting style. It's highly influenced by etching techniques, which I graduated in, next to painting and drawing. I mostly build up my work carefully and work towards several layers creating a large variety of tones; so called washes. I also experiment with special techniques and mediums. Some works come about through a process of working out the same subject in different manners until I find the right way to convey what I want. That way even a small painting might take a lot of time to come into existence. Because with Chinese ink, once a stroke is made, it’s there to stay. But I dare to take risks which often provides the work a powerful appearance. Quite different from water colour painting, which I also practiced a lot early in my career. I started Chinese ink painting after a residency at the Chinese European Art Center in China in 2014.

Below are links to possible categories in which the work can be divided. But there are in fact no strict divisions between these works



Red Stream

ongoing series of outdoor paintings. Click image at top top to see more.




Being Here

The B e i n g H e r e works come in an ongoing series of Chinese ink paintings that come into existence in the context of actually being somewhere and relating to that.

c l i c k & g o

Image: 'Stream', Loire at Checy, 2019




Being There

B e i n g T h e r e Ongoing series of Chinese ink paintings deriving from all sorts of sources, not necessarily something from where one actually is. It can be inspired by an image seen on the internet, something remembered, fiction or a combination of all possibilities.

c l i c k & g o

Image: 'Mastodons', Chinese ink on Hahnemühle paper 310 gr, 30 x 40 cm 2021




Trees

collection of tree paintings c l i c k & g o




Still Life

series of paintings containing objects or scenes, also 'Being Here'

c l i c k & g o




Position Panorama (in development)

Project in which a series of Chinese ink paintings that are connectable become a panorama as a basis for an installation that welcomes conversation and interaction


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