Gabrielle Kruger

wind swept paint


Opening: 4.7.2024, 5-9pm

Layer by layer the viewer is drawn into the depths of Gabrielle Kruger’s study of paint, which is central to her artistic process. Paint is given its own viscosity in a process developed by the artist herself. When wet, it is reminiscent of glue, can act as a bond and creates connections. When dried, it can be moulded into a variety of shapes.The paint functions as a material for collages, as glue or yarn, is cut, taped, woven, braided, dismembered and reassembled.

Kruger starts the process of painting not on a canvas, but on a sheet of plastic, where paint compositions are dried in thick layers. These surfaces are then removed and collaged onto the still-damp canvas, or used as a sculptural thing in itself. Various compositions are ungrounded and layered in this unconventional painting technique; and thus give rise to tendrils and leaf structures, branching and alignments of leaves that sometimes protrude and completely drip off the canvas. Other works show more geometric arrangements, smears and spatulated colour masses. In another series, the paint is extruded into yarns and woven into imposing colour textiles, that simultaneously honour and subvert the typically female tradition of textile art.

In a similar manner, the tradition of landscape painting is deconstructed in the processes of layering and un-layering. This is where the vegetation of forms meet the technical methods and the plasticity      of acrylic, where nature meets the artificial. Both the process of painting and the physicality of the paint is in constant motion. There is a studio dialogue of movement; transference and change, of growing and becoming, which acknowledges the gentle change of the seasons or the abrupt pace of change that we face at present. The dominance of texture and the materiality of the paint is omnipresent, yet at the same time the evanescent layer of softness bears the stirring and fleeting impression of the landscape. 

The process determines the work and is itself a performance, an artistic act. She gains control over the medium and simultaneously relinquishes it again, allowing for coincidences and possibilities. The art-historical concept of painting is elevated to a performative level. The conventional boundaries between genres become blurred, it can be painting, sculpture and performance all at once without forming a contradiction. 


The tension between material and what is shown intuitively negotiates the contemporary relationship between humankind and the environment. In the age of the Anthropocene, nature is determined by human activity, the environment is increasingly plasticized and landscape is more of a social and material construct. The malleability of acrylic in its plasticity reflects this relationship and at the same time questions the traditional understanding of nature and painting. Not a drop of paint is wasted in the studio process – everything is reused and repurposed, leftover paint lives on in new paintings or sculptures, creating an overarching dialogue. The paintings thus invite us to reflect on human interaction with the environment and our responsibility for societal actions. They pose questions,  subtly without imposing a particular interpretation. It hangs in the air, in the light, like wind sweeping through the leaves. 

Press release by Diana Eicker