Master class in Fine Arts / Painting
Prof. Hanns Schimansky
Diploma of Fine Arts / Painting, University of Arts KHB, Berlin
Prof. Hanns Schimansky
1995 – 2001
study of Fine Arts / Painting, University of Arts KHB, Berlin
Prof. Werner Liebmann / Prof. Hanns Schimansky
1993 – 1995
education in printing technology / offset printing
1986 – 1989
education as concrete worker with high school diploma
Born in East-Berlin, former GDR.
Lives and works in Berlin, Germany
by Kathrin Schrader
Vernissage “Neue Coloraturen“, 2019, Galerie 100, Berlin
Antje Taubert loves colour. She plays with colour, she probes, she researches. The palette is her laboratory, as is the canvas and paper upon which she composes colour – glazing, layering, cutting contrasts, developing harmonies and hierarchies – in short, where she enacts colour. As the curtain rises on colour’s major performance, the title tells much: Neue Coloraturen encompassing how colour sings and vibrates. Antje Taubert celebrates colour.
She prefers to work with oils, enjoying their consistency. She says they concur with her slow working method. She loves the depth and gleam of oil colours.
The African Diaries evolved from the artist’s five-week journey through South Africa. Each leaf brings picture frames or book pages to mind, perhaps postcards, at least in format, on such as we like to exchange our travel memories. Yet this journal makes for unusual reading. We are accustomed to the daily flood of travel reports. Pictures of mountains and beaches, architecture, human portraits and animal observations, even hotel and bar interiors. The more spectacular the photos and films, the longer we gaze at them. And, in the world of persistent, superficial media consumerism, gazing-time has become a significant measurement.
And then, here we are, in a gallery exhibiting a travel journal, and the brilliant colours certainly attract us, but the pages are basically empty. The contrasts, harmonies and fractures captivate us. Here and there, a shape appears, a picture or a symbol. Repeatedly. Some pages are divided into fields of colour. But, in the end, we don’t know what the painter saw in Africa. Her experiences are wholly abstracted in colour.
And this: dissolving memory into abstractions is nothing new in Antje Taubert’s work. Some years ago, she created a series of works in which she reduced postcards from her childhood, depicting buildings and landscapes, to colour surfaces – the postcard locations could no longer be identified. Titles such as Birthing House or Plaza are also more or less vague. Antje Taubert encrypted her memories into a pictorial language that only she or initiates can decipher. Thus, she protects her personal memories from strangers’ access. She makes places that anyone can view hidden places. In her African Diaries, Antje Taubert hides her travel pictures from us. Yet, we can journey with her. But be careful! This isn’t about clicks and likes! Linger in front of these journal pages! Look closely! And you will capture your own flow of thought, overhear your own associations and experiences.
An artist whose theme is colour, takes on the challenge of colour. Antje Taubert wanted to paint a yellow picture. She has always been interested in yellow, she told us in her atelier, because it is more energetically charged than red, yet very light, rather difficult. You will find the yellow picture in the rear room, it’s part of the Krümmungen series. Antje Taubert dedicated her yellow picture to the Swedish painter Hilma af Klint, whose work has been rediscovered in recent years. The round shapes, the Krümmungen remind us of Klint’s large, geometric flower motifs, highly unusual for her times.
In the painting series Interference, Antje Taubert allows her colour surfaces to congregate apparently coincidentally, without rhyme or reason, fractures, dissolving the strict geometric harmony of earlier work sequences. The courageous, spontaneous structures of superimpositions and collisions rise from the surface, fold open, create spaces and associations with familiar urbane structures.
Finally, I would like to say a few words about Antje Taubert’s drawings. These are the radiant ink drawings on paper, the Venetian blinds sequence, their forms inspired by jalousies or marquises. Antje Taubert studied at Berlin’s Weißensee Academy of Art. She was a protégé of the graphic artist Hanns Schimansky and, following her studies, began her artistic career with drawings. Her epitomizing to the essential, discovery of structures and her enthusiasm for the impact of colour has led her here, to Neue Coloraturen. Antje Taubert ventures further and further into the freedom of expression. A rare artist, her work sequences allow us to follow her career, step by step.
She rejects the label Concrete Art, as her own, inimitable signature is important to her. This, however, did not hinder the jury of the André Evard Award for Concrete Art in nominating her for the award twice, in 2010 and 2018.
Translation: Katja Plaisant
Firmament of colours
Essay of Dr. Gabi Ivan, 2015
Antje Taubert devours her themes with her intense drawing style. These highly provocative, vibrantly colourful signature drawings go straight to the essential, downright symbolic appearance of buildings, mountains, manmade object, etc. To use Dürer’s expression, she “wrenches” her subjects “out” of all narrative contexts, concentrating wholly on characteristic forms and colours.
Which then reappear in her paintings – harshly analytical, while equally transporting to a new aesthetic, a wholly unique presentational mode. In her paintings, Antje Taubert favours extracts of form and colour which have become far removed from the original event, creating a structured world full of harmony and coloured light. Her grouped paintings on various themes appear not only geometrically ordered, but mathematically redefined and freshly inspired. What emerges are coolly coloured paintings; square surfaces measured in opulent geometrical figures and evolutions of form.
Geometric shapes spread out in waves, stack and overlap one another. The shapes are all based on squares, triangles and circles – the beauty of geometry: entirely devoid of mysticism or transcendence, but full of clear breadths and mirth. Russian green, red, blue, yellow – it is a feast of diagonal and mirrored symmetries of the delicately graded colours. These bring movement to the centred compositions, as if they are rotating, their energies flooding over the edges of the picture.
Radically simplified, manifold multiplied and monumental, Antje Taubert transports the elements of her themes to a new aesthetic existence as panel paintings – powerful, clear and celebratory.