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Thilo Heinzmann: What do you want me to bring you : I am going to town

Perrotin Marais, Paris

Artist: Thilo Heinzmann

Opening reception: Saturday 16 March, 3pm

Perrotin presents What do you want me to bring you : I am going to town, the third solo exhibition by Thilo Heinzmann in the Paris gallery featuring a selection of recent pigment paintings, which visually challenge the viewers.


Installation Views

Installation image for Thilo Heinzmann: What do you want me to bring you : I am going to town, at Perrotin Installation image for Thilo Heinzmann: What do you want me to bring you : I am going to town, at Perrotin Installation image for Thilo Heinzmann: What do you want me to bring you : I am going to town, at Perrotin Installation image for Thilo Heinzmann: What do you want me to bring you : I am going to town, at Perrotin Installation image for Thilo Heinzmann: What do you want me to bring you : I am going to town, at Perrotin Installation image for Thilo Heinzmann: What do you want me to bring you : I am going to town, at Perrotin Installation image for Thilo Heinzmann: What do you want me to bring you : I am going to town, at Perrotin Installation image for Thilo Heinzmann: What do you want me to bring you : I am going to town, at Perrotin Installation image for Thilo Heinzmann: What do you want me to bring you : I am going to town, at Perrotin

Nearly every painter is looking for unique painterly moments, which are rare and precious and often hard to come by. Thilo Heinzmann has spent over 30 years trying to capture that moment. It is something that cannot be brought up forcefully or even too purposefully, but at the same time it does not come naturally or unintentionally either. His paintings are testament to the processes and setups that he continuously involves himself in with the purpose of reaching those perceptual peaks.

What is crucial for navigating through an exhibition of Heinzmann's works is to understand the different planes on which they exist and interact, physically and metaphorically. First, there is the painterly surface and its boundaries as an object; then there is its treatment, namely the insertions and deletions, applications and indentations, incisions and scrapings, and the pushing of paint with brushes, tools and bare hands – and how these are married in a carefully orchestrated celebration of intention and chance.

On a higher plane, we find their extended relation to time and space. Because the paintings are the result of a living, unmediated painting process they appear both frozen in motion and as the material remains of a physically intense reaction, which gives them a temporal quality similar to when one takes a photograph through the window of a vehicle at high speed. And just like these pictures, they show both the precise sharpness and the spread-out bluriness which we know to appear in that frictional time-space when speeding elements and static backgrounds collide in an instant.

Spatially his paintings can both contract towards a center and extend beyond the canvas through the painterly allusion of movement as well as through becoming hybrid painting-sculptures and literally standing in space, looking back, becoming one of you, among you, with you. And this is also how the show's title can be understood, paintings and viewers involved in a give and take amongst equals.

The difference between such interaction and for example the current communication between human and artificial intelligence is that the realm of Heinzmann's paintings is preor supra-linguistic instead of being semantically bound and therefore it can induce novel experiences before they are automatically categorized by computers or cognition alike. This is a deeper quality that guarantees the persistence of his language of painting.

Born in 1969 in Berlin, Germany
Lives and works in Berlin, Germany

Thilo Heinzmann attended Städelschule in Frankfurt from the early 1990s in the class of Thomas Bayrle. During that time he also assisted Martin Kippenberger. A significant voice in a generation of German painters scrutinizing the medium and its history, his inventive, precise works are driven by an inquiry into what painting can be today. Using chipboard, styrofoam, nail polish, resin, pigment, fur, cotton wool, porcelain, aluminum and hessian, Heinzmann has for the last twenty-five years worked on developing new paths and an unique visual language in his practice. He is interested in the presence that each work creates, which is further enhanced by his paintings’ powerful tactile qualities. It invites the viewer to notions on some essentials: composition, surface, form, color, light, texture, and time. In 2018 he was appointed professor of painting at Universität der Künste in Berlin.

Views of Thilo Heinzmann's exhibition What do you want me to bring you : I am going to town at Perrotin Paris, 2024. Photo: Claire Dorn. ©THILO HEINZMANN/ADAGP, Paris, 2024. Courtesy of the artist and Perrotin

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