press release

We are pleased to show the work of the two Leipzig artists Paule Hammer (born in 1975) and Sebastian Gögel (born in 1978). In contrast to the painters of the Leipzig school, Gögel and Hammer seek in their work to use sculpture and spatial installations as media of expression to place pop over the sublime, thus combining a vital, penetrating power with a clever, sharp wit.

Sebastian Gögel and Paule Hammer have been collaborating on sculptural installations since 2005, combining the anthropomorphic characters from Gögel’s painting with Hammer’s associative configurations of drawings and collages. For both artists, the surface of the canvas is not enough; their expansion of the painted surface to the surrounding space is first of all due to an expansive pleasure in painting itself.

Their collaborative works move among the disciplines of installation, painting, and sculpture. They play with image and text, abstraction and comics, mobilizing oil paints, latex, cloth, construction foam, aluminum foil, and modeling clay. Their playful designs with easy gestures usually treat the everyday with a wickedly funny visual humor until it tips over into the grotesque, making elements of horror transform into weird bits of everyday life. Their three-dimensional escapades are at the same time macabre, restless and unmercifully entertaining.

For I Just Don’t Know What to Do with Myself, an installation first shown in Leipzig’s Laden für Nichts and reconstructed for the London gallery Ritter/Zamet, Sebastian Gögel and Paule Hammer built together with Andreas Grahl a star-shaped, room filling object that looks on the one hand like a hand-painted colorful UFO that has landed, and then again like an exploding comet about to burst the walls of the room. Saturated with pornographic collages and gothic-punk elements, these foreign bodies, which seem simultaneously organic and mechanical, occupy the space, hence crowding out the classical perspective of the exhibition space as well as the visitors from their customary positions.

With all their relics of pop culture, ironic adaptations of kitsch and horror, and apparent homage of chaos, the works of Gögel and Hammer are outfitted with their own perceptual program that consciously plays on the arbitrary in an ironic, nasty, laconic, and defiant way, and employs provocation and sources of irritation in a calculated fashion.


Sebastian Gögel and Paule Hammer
Ort: Chung King Project