Dirk Stewen: Open Studio and Reception
Dirk Stewen is a German-born artist living in Hamburg, who has been in residency at Chinati over the last two months. He works primarily with paper, using a rich and varied investigation of applications and modes of art-making that includes photography, drawing, assemblage, collage, and embroidery. His materials come from his own repository of made and collected images.
There will be an opening reception for the artist at the Locker Plant on Thursday, January 24, 2013 from 6:00 until 8:00 PM. The Marfa community will have the chance to see many aspects of Stewen’s work.
Infused with a poet’s touch for what is left unsaid or explained, Stewen’s work includes watercolors, often painted on a specific pre-printed paper stock – loose pages from a particular antiquated French art publication, the paper now pale and faded with time. The tipped-in plates have been ripped out, however the formal, printed titles from the previous volume are left to comment ambiguously or tellingly on what is depicted.
Multi-paneled collages, celestial in feeling, feature cut out and applied dots on a swirling dark field made with exposed photo-paper doused with black ink. The small applied circular forms have been hand-sewn onto the paper, with their excess threads cascading down from the picture, crisscrossing the surface, looping or dangling, and moving slightly as you walk by. Process, pattern, color, space, time, and memory play equal roles in the making of Stewen’s work.
Stewen’s art is unabashedly beautiful and personal. In dialogue with his own history as well as art that has come before, the works, in their particular and mysterious sequences and juxtapositions, are manifestations of pure feeling.
Dirk studied at the Hoschschule fur Bildende Kunste, Hamburg, and has had a solo exhibition at the CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Art in San Francisco. A publication entitled While You Were Out, which covers a broad range of Stewen’s oeuvre, was published by Walter Koenig in 2009. He is currently showing new work at the Tanya Bonakdar Gallery in New York through February.