Ulrich MeisterUlrich Meister

Ulrich Meister

Ulrich Meister. Photo: G. Thiessen-Schneider


New Works

September 20th to November 2nd, 1997

Introduction by Irene Veenstra, Eindhoven.
In collaboration with Kunstverein Recklinghausen.

"A piece of cheese.  If I pick up the pen to draw a piece of cheese, which is wedge-shaped and cut out of a round cheese wheel, I am aware that I still have to prepare myself for many new additions to those decisions that I have already made.  I take a clear stand with my choice of subject from the everyday world, and I mainly want to investigate that area of life, but also an artistic tradition.  There are very practical reasons for this.  Thus it is the meeting of practical life skills with spiritual needs in an almost seamless step.  What's more, I believe not in only "content" or in "form".  Whether I'm using a house, a tree, the human figure, or even a piece of cheese as my subject, the language of design from which I can draw, the artistic questions that I must resolve, always remain the same."
"A picture is just something in a language of images" Wittgenstein once said.  Elsewhere he says, "A thing as it recognizes itself means nothing.  Whether I am visual or verbal means griffins, describing and mapping the world in a way comparable to the measurement of a thing with the meter gauge.  What I do get as a result is always determined by the agent.  How I do it too, I always stay the same distance away from the thing.  What I can figure are the properties of the medium and their options - whether the stroke, color, language, or photography.
A piece of cheese painted with a broad brush on canvas, photographed, or drawn with a pen freehand on paper, is always different each time.  The side of design increasingly brings the respective medium with its sensible properties on display.  Subject and medium form a unity.  The room that opens up to me as an artist is to balance which side the result tends towards more, but it is possible to overlook making the right decisions to add and go wherever I want - and possibly even a small piece beyond.
Now I feel tightened by a piece of cheese so much that i feel the urge to draw it, but I reflect that equal to my interest is not the cheese itself, which puts me in suspense, but it's form, or better:  some aspect of its form.
And I assume that it was dealing with an aspect of the shape of an object which made me aware of it.  (If I go to visit an exhibition of monochrome paintings on the street, the first thing I notice is clearly distinguishable colors on or in my area.)
I finally reach to the pen to describe and reproduce by means of line (and hand) my experience when looking at the cheese.  It is not of minor importance why and for what kind of pen I decide to use, on behalf of the line I want to create and which medium should be used to connect them, etc.  It is then applied, which entails the options of the line itself within itself.
A line always symbolizes something or expresses something, or both.  As soon as one leaves the rough direction of the line and begins to bend to shape, it arouses the curiosity of what one wants to represent.  They must, in spite of the function to meet them, not represent themselves?  Have individual character?  Thus, the questions continue indefinitely."  (Ulrich Meister, July 1997)

An exhibition catalog has been published.

Supported by the city of Neuenhaus and the state of Lower Saxony.