Smears in the Heat
As I was scrolling through my feed recently, threatening to sink into the deep canyon of the social media vortex, I came across a friend‘s post that she published some time ago. It featured urban architecture and was titled „Hello finger“. At the bottom of the photo, one could glimpse a shimmering, blurry smear with glowing edges. The outwardly decreasing opacity gave the entire surface a smooth transition with the image motif while obscuring a considerable part of it, virtually obliterating it. It was her finger that had got caught in the image and - in an act of self-dramatization - made an attempt on it by trying to push itself into the foreground and ultimately positioned itself as the main character in the scene. Some might call it a misfortune, and immediately repeat the process without paying further attention to what was happening, create a corrected version and shelve the failed one. For the self-proclaimed protagonist, it would have been only a few brief minutes of fame. The finger that slips into the picture is just as much a by-product of a hasty, fast-moving snapshot society as the blurred, unintentionally taken pocket photo. One might think of these as annoying mistakes that need to go under the knife. In online forums, amateurs discuss how to photoshop away the parasitic finger nicely. While theorists, however, address the blurred image aesthetic as an intended stylistic device, because it gives the image a peculiar liveliness precisely because of its immediacy and „taken-from-life“ quality. In a currently ever wilder swirling maelstrom of images, it becomes an almost insurmountable task for people to distinguish between relevant and non-relevant contents. In the works for the exhibition „Smears in the heat“ there is no longer any distinction between these categories. Pictorial content and disturbing factors are equated in the paintings and coexist in an imagery of their own, in which they elude unambiguous pigeonholing.
Lukas Matuschek / Sam Purcell