27 July–27 October 2019
Herforder Kunstverein at the Daniel-Pöppelmann-Haus, Deichtorwall 2, 32052 Herford, Germany
Opening: Saturday, 27 July 2019, 4.30 p.m.
Welcome: Sarah Heitkemper (chairperson)
Introduction: Janina Strathmeier (art historian)
Photo: Wolfgang Holm
Photos: Wolfgang Holm
Around 120 guests at the exhibition opening
Full house at the Herforder Kunstverein: With around 120 invited guests, including many Kunstverein members, the exhibition Aatifi – Alphabet der Malerei opened at the end of July 2019. Around thirty paintings and ink drawings, some of them large-format, from 2019 and previous years can be seen in Herford. The painter and graphic artist has accepted as an artistic challenge the architecture of the house with its concrete, white clinker brick walls and generous glass insert with a view of the greenery, and has painted and drawn several works especially for the exhibition space in the Daniel-Pöppelmann-Haus. The main work is an untitled two-part painting in a 250 by 320 cm format from 2017, which is placed on the largest wall in the basement. The four ink drawings, hung one above the other on the concrete stele, which is over six metres high, are a striking eyecatcher. Aatifi created the drawings from the 2019 series 'Verve' on handmade paper in a 90 by 110 cm format in handmade object frames especially for this architectural element in order to create a visual connection between the two exhibition levels.
Sarah Heitkemper, chairwoman of the Herforder Kunstverein, emphasised in her welcoming speech that the Bielefeld artist, with his colourful and powerful works, had built a bridge between cultures and between the premises of the Kunstverein with this long-planned solo exhibition. Art historian Janina Strathmeier emphasised the dynamic compositions in which forms and lines enter into an exciting relationship with each other. Aatifi translates the two-dimensional, graphic impression of calligraphy, the starting point of his abstract-scriptural pictorial language without any reference to text, into three-dimensional, vivid pictorial works. The paintings and graphics allow new perspectives to emerge: tension and harmony are often very close together. Aatifi – Alphabet der Malerei runs until 27 October 2019, combined with an accompanying program. The artist will give a guided tour of his exhibition on Sunday, 22 September at 11.30 a.m. and will be on site in person on Saturday, 28 September 2019 for the 13th Herford Culture Night. For the members of the Herforder Kunstverein, Aatifi, who was presented in June with a solo show by the Gallery VON & VON (Nuremberg, Germany) at Paper Positions Basel at Art Basel, is providing two aquatint etchings in an exclusive edition.
Photos: Felix Brenneke, Wolfgang Holm