artist / participant

press release

Peter Blum is pleased to announce the exhibition Helmut Federle, The Ferner Paintings at 20 West 57th Street, New York. There will be an opening reception on Thursday, November 14th, from 6 to 8 p.m.

A book was published by Peter Blum Edition and will be released on the occasion of the exhibition. This 112 page hardcover book includes the images of The Ferner Paintings as well as comparative works by Federle and other artists; it features a text by Erich Franz in English and German.

Helmut Federle’s latest body of work, The Ferner Paintings, created in 2012 and 2013 all represent one form: the circle. The paintings, each measuring 19 5/8 x 15 3/4 inches (50 x 40 cm), are executed using vegetable oil to stain the raw sand colored linen, resulting in muted rings of various widths and values hovering slightly above the center of each canvas.

When viewing the paintings one encounters various (even conflicting) perceptions: the paintings are simultaneously quiet and forceful, there is a constant tension between motion and stillness, the circle itself is present and at the same time it is just stained linen. The viewer might at first perceive the formal qualities of the painting; however, the significance of the paintings exists on a spiritual level.

The word Ferner has a threefold meaning in German: fern means “far”; ferner means “in the future,” or “furthermore,” and in Austria and southern Germany ferner is a term for “glacier.”

Helmut Federle was born in Solothurn, Switzerland, in 1944. He lives and works in and in Vienna, Austria, and Camaiore, Italy. In 1997 he represented Switzerland at the 47th Venice Biennale. From 1999 to 2007 he was professor at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf and in 2008 he won the Prix Aurélie -Nemours. Among Federle’s most recent exhibitions was Helmut Federle Esencial, curated by Juan Manuel Bonet, and held at the Fundación Bancaja in Valencia, Spain, from September 2012 to January 2013. The Kunstmuseum Luzern mounted american songline, a retrospective of small and medium-sized paintings, from November 2012 to February 2013. Federle had a one-man show curated by Roman Kurzmeyer at Galerie nächst St. Stephan in Vienna in March and April 2010. Scratching Away at the Surface, an exhibition of new paintings, was exhibited at Peter Blum Gallery from October 2009 to January 2010.

only in german

Helmut Federle
The Ferner Paintings