Gallery Anne Barrault is pleased to present Jochen Gerner’s new solo exhibition.
In 2002, “TNT en Amérique”1 was the starting point of his exploration of the potentialities of the recovering of an image with ink. Today, with this exhibition, “Black Lagoon”, Jochen Gerner continues to investigate this field, using a growing variety of printed documents: postcards, photographs from magazines, geographical maps, military maps, didactic images, movie posters, comic strips, etc.
The title of this exhibition refers to Jack Arnold’s horror movie, Creature from the “Black Lagoon” (1954). In this thriller, a palaeontologist discovers, in the heart of the Amazon, the fossil of a hand belonging to an unknown species. He is convinced it is the missing link between man and fish, and he organizes an expedition to exhume the rest of the skeleton. So the team decides to go down the river by boat, going deeper and deeper into a wild and sticky hot territory, without imagining its waters still house the strange creature…On October 19th 1982, French viewers, with blue and red filter lens glasses, were able to see this film in 3D on their TV, a very new experience.
The phrase “black lagoon”, nearly an oxymoron, indicates a visible and flat surface as well as hidden depth.
Jochen Gerner, keeping to his approach of the erased image and its recovering, gives the possibility Jochen Gerner of reading and interpreting this black matter. By his work on superimposition, he gives the illusion of totally reinterpreting the original image, invisible but potentially present under the black layer of ink.
True to his experience of observation, Jochen Gerner views the visual world with an altogether analytical, critical and attentive eye. He is both inside and outside the images: simultaneously author and observer. Nevertheless, his viewing stands up to words; it is a process of juxtaposition, “ putting images side by side”, it is some sort of inventory, of listing.
“When working for several hours on the initial image, I completely enter inside its construction. I look for the rift, the interstice, which will allow me to really, and differently enter the image.”2
This exhibition presents series of drawings on printed documents of all sorts. The drawings made up of multiple surfaces covered with Indian ink look like as many little black lagoons.
1 Jochen Gerner, “TNT en Amérique”, text available on: http://w.w.w.galerieannebarrault.com/jochen_gerner/tnt.html
2 Jochen Gerner , quoted by Adrien Bugari and Olivier Sécardin, in “ La possibilité du retrait”, Mouvement, n°54, janvier-mars 2010, p.150.