background on which Agnes Märkel’s artwork is to be
placed can be described by a quote from the English art
critic and author John Berger. It is taken from his essay
“On Visibility”: "All appearances are continually
changing one another; visually everything is interdependent.
Looking is submitting the sense of sight to the experience
of that interdependence." And: "The visible is a
feature of that life, it cannot exist without it. In a dead
universe nothing is visible."
means: everything we visually perceive is related to each
other in our interior. We see something and automatically
connect it with another thing which we have already seen,
which we know, which we remember. Space and time are skipped,
disintegrated, for a while they are not relevant anymore,
except if we deliberately pursue those interfaces we
consciously make up. One consequence of this is that
everything we see comes into contact with a previously
perveived treasury of pictures. Every present impression
mixes itself with a past impression. There is no such thing
as seeing neutrally. Every view is essentially subjective,
interconnected, rooted, individual, peculiar, constantly
subject to correspondence and alterations through new
experiences. No person sees things the same as another.
– and this is striking – the transition from photography
to painting on Agnes Märkel’s pictures can hardly be
determined. One has to get quite close to the works to see
where one ends and the other one begins. Viewers are
continually challenged to confirm their perception. Then
they discover in detail a small world of its own that, from
a distance, merges with the overall picture.
at the picture becomes a process by itself in which there is
no standstill, no unambiguousness. The eye follows the
rhythm, roams over the picture surface – the spatial
dimension of the survey is joined by a temporal one. The
fact that Agnes Märkel often gets the inspiration for her
pictures from films becomes clear in this movement that she
demands from the eye. In that sense the question is
irrelevant whether painting or drawing is still timely in
our media-filled world. Without our knowledge of handling
motion pictures it would hardly be possible to decode Agnes
Märkel’s collaged world of paintings.