Christin Wilcken – In The Old Forest

Soft Opening: Saturday, 08/08/2020, 11 am – 5 pm
Exhibition period: 08/09 – 09/25/2020
Caspar-David-Friedrich-Zentrum, Lange Straße 57, 17489 Greifswald, Germany


Christin Wilcken was born in 1982 in Güstrow/ GDR and studied communication science and fine arts between 2001 and 2007 in Greifswald at the Caspar-David-Friedrich-Institute. In 2007 she won the Caspar-David-Friedrich-Prize which is awarded by the Caspar-David-Friedrich-Society in an annual rotation since 2001. Along with the award came a solo show of the winner, Christin Wilcken, which took place at the Pomeranian State Museum in Greifswald. The Caspar-David-Friedrich-Prize was the first of many awards and scholarships, Christin Wilcken has earned since then. Among others she won the art prize of the Freundeskreis “Neue Kunst hat Freunde” in Ahrenshoop in 2013; the advancement award for upcomming artists of the State Mecklenburg-Hither Pomerania in 2016 as well as several scholarships abroad, such as in Sweden (2007), in Lithuania (2014) and just recently in Finnland (2020), just to name a few.

Since 2015 Christin Wilckens body of work is represented by the art gallery Circus Eins in Putbus/ Rugia which is run by Susanne Burmester. The busy group exhibition schedule of Christin Wilcken and the presence of several of her works in public collections, such as the art collection of Neubrandenburg, the art collection of Kunsthalle Rostock and last but not least the governmental art collection of the State of Mecklenburg-Hither Pomerania are proof for the great quality of the art work of Christin Wilcken.


Throughout the past few years the Caspar-David-Friedrich-Society accompanied the artistic developement and career of Christin Wilcken, as those of other former award winners. Therefore we are especially pleased to present the second solo exhibition of Christin Wilcken within the show rooms of the Caspar-David-Friedrich-Centre. The last solo exhibition of Christin Wilcken at the Centre was called „Objects and Drawings“ and dates back to 2012. Some of our long term members and visitors may still recall this show. Meanwhile quite a few new art works were created by the artist and we are glad to represent some of them to our visitors. Most notably we recommend to take a close look at the very latest art works of Christin Wilcken, which were created during her stay for her latest scholarship abroad in Finnland. During June and July 2020, these artworks were created under the impression of the Finnish landscape in summer in the first year of the pandemic.


The artist adressing her art works:


““My art works are mostly based upon experiences of nature, which I try to transmit into a pictorial space between plane areas and spacial entities. During the process of drawing, I examine the pictorial space and take the perception of the viewer into consideration. Reflecions appear and disappear in reliance of the light incidence. By mounting the drawing onto a wall object, it undergoes an expansion into [three dimentional] space. When it comes to drawing, I focus on few materials, such as graphite, charcoal and pigments. By working in a serial manner, I explore variations of the interactions between my reduced means.””


Christin Wilcken, aus der Serie "Im alten Wald", 2020, Graphit, schwarzer Farbstift auf Papier, 42 x 32 cm, (© VG Bildkunst, Bonn 2020, Foto: Terho Aalto)


Those experiences of nature also form the centre of the most recent works of art by Christin Wilcken. Here‘s what she says about her latest source of inspiration:


“Finnland is a region that to a broad extent consists of primordial nature, which to a great deal influenced the old Finnish culture. This nature - the impenetrable forests, which are characterised by shadows and light and punctuated by relfecting lakes, are constantly floating within the interspace of reality and fiction and between the natural and the ghostly world. During June and July 2020 the beginning of a graphical involvement took place while being on an scholarship abroad for one month.“


Looking at the pieces of art work that Christin Wilcken created in Finnland, it‘s the reduction of means that strikes us first - the limitation to graphite or monochrome coloured pencils on paper for example.
Compared to what we are used to see in depictions of landscapes in fine arts, Christin Wilckens art works do not only seem to be reduced and abstract, but far more than this, they appear to be dissolved out of time and space.
They are in a state of refusal of the humane gaze onto landscape as such: there is no horizontal line that seperates the upside from the downside; there is no spacial perspective that helps the viewer to recognise his or her own point of view. The reduction of the palette from a coloured to a monochrome scale does it‘s bit. Instead elements, condensed to form solitairs, are flowing, floating and fleeing through the pictorial space. Their strangeness only comes undone by looking at their details.
Within those details, within the structure and texture of the drawn traces, the viewer might come across some naturelike features, such as: rays of light within leafage, radicular turnings and twistings, scarps of smaller and bigger rocks, stream courses and lake surfaces with and without the reflections of light.
Memories of landscapes and experiences of nature seem to be unhinged from their context and banned onto the screen in formations that are inaccessible to the viewer. Thus on behalf of the viewer the element of mystery, the unknown and the enigmatic is opposed to the direct experience of nature of the artist herself.
If we want, we could talk about a new kind of „barred landscape“, as it often appears in landscapes by Caspar David Friedrich. The viewer senses to different extends, what kind of landscape might have inspired the artist to creating her art work, but the direct view onto this landscape remains secret.
Within the oeuvre of Caspar David Friedrich elements such as fences, bushes or cloughs are quite often used to depict the inaccessibility of a certain landscape; to keep away the gaze of the viewer or at least to decrease the illusional impression, that the viewer only had to take one step further, to be standing right within the depicted (and sublime) landscape.


Christin Wilcken, aus der Serie "Im alten Wald", 2020, Graphit, schwarzer Farbstift auf Papier, 42 x 32 cm, (© VG Bildkunst, Bonn 2020, Foto: Terho Aalto)


Within the art work of Christin Wilcken, the viewer isn‘t even certain, if there is a ground on which he or she could stand, to verge on to the genuine landscape. Nonetheless elements of nature are undeniable, immanent part of the abstract pieces of art. The new formations, Christin Wilcken uses to depict her very own experiences within nature, in the end lead us – the viewer - to a new and to a free way of looking at and emphasizing with the art work.

From August 8th until September 25th 2020 we cordially invite you to the Caspar-David-Friedrich-Centre to explore the latest part of Christin Wilcken‘s oeuvre!


Sincerely yours, the board of the Caspar-David-Friedrich-Society


Caroline Barth, CEO of the Caspar-David-Friedrich-Centre


The Exhibition is presented to you in friendly association with Susanne Burmester, Circus Eins Art Gallery, Putbus.


Lange Straße 57
17489 Greifswald


Opening Hours: Tue – Sun, 11 am – 5 pm


Fon: +49 3834 88 45 68


In case you want to buy art by Christin Wilcken, please contact:


Galerie Circus Eins
Susanne Burmester (Künstlerische Leitung)
Circus 1, 18581 Putbus
Ostseeinsel Rügen Fon.: +49 151 42 44 66 38