Georg WEISSBACH | The Joy of Overpainting
The new series of works by the painter Georg Weißbach presented under the title "The Joy Of Overpainting", works on fundamental questions of painting. The television show "The Joy Of Painting" serves as a reference, in which the American painter Bob Ross (1942-1995) produces and conveys oil paintings in his characteristic wet-on-wet technique. The starting point for Weißbach's new works is a collection of over 150 canvases which he acquired by a certified Bob Ross painting teacher (CRI®) respective certified Bob Ross landscape and flower painting teacher (CRFI®).
Weißbach approaches this material in different ways. Sometimes it only serves as an image carrier, which is overpainted all over, so that a new image is created on the second level. Sometimes he operates with omissions, so that layers connect and together form a new motif. Occasionally he paints over the original image, so that new and old images are created on a canvas side by side or on top of each other or remain there. Sometimes it is just Georg Weißbach's (G.W.) signature alone that characterizes the overpainting. In accordance with the repetitions of motifs in the original pictures (from mountain landscape to seascape), Weißbach also works serially in the overpainting: mountains of tilts line up with typologies of columns, cacti stand out, a collection of narrative textual works (sometimes painted, sometimes outlined - sometimes positive, sometimes negative) stands against a group of abstract compositions, while elsewhere figurations meet monochrome surfaces. Sometimes windows open up world of immages, sometimes a wall obscures the view in and on the picture.
Weißbach arranges his symphony of small-format paintings on a wallpaper that imitates brick. Despite its fundamentally limiting function, this wall extends the space by connecting the inside and outside of the gallery and also creating the feeling of a stage. Against this background, not only the individual works are presented, but also the guiding question is what can be done in the context of an exhibition. In the shift in punctuation from the question mark to the exclamation mark, from "What can I do?" To "What can I do !!!", one can read an expression of excessive demands. An overwhelming challenge that can be understood differently with regard to the role of the artist: not only in terms of the number of newly produced works and the associated challenges, but also in relation to the question in art in general.
What can I still do faced with a centuries-old tradition of painting? When using a sign that is associated with exclamation, request and request sentences, the artist also provides an answer with the question, in the sense of a “What I Can Do !!!”. He only sees what he wants to see & just paint what he can paint.
Weißbach spells out different approaches to overpainting - whereby writing as an artistic medium has always been significant in the artist's work - in which on the surface, i.e. every additive layer of painting, chapters of painting history appear superficially in their own model and image : from Picasso to Pictures Generation (etc. pp.), if you are looking for alliterary examples with an emphasis on art history. "The Joy Of Overpainting" becomes a (self) thematization of the artistic process and raises questions about novelty and authenticity (originality), authorship and productivity. The exhibition also challenges it to deal with endurance. YOU CAN’T SPELL PAINTING WITHOUT PAIN. Where are the boundaries between supposedly high art and lucky hobby painting? Seemingly harmless motifs, the presentation of which we have to say goodbye to, in the face of Weißbach's overpainting, challenge viewing habits and demands in the exhibition space that in the end should be fun. Sometimes like this; sometimes like that. And finally to say it like Bob Ross at the end of each show: »From all of us here: I’d like to wish you happy painting and God bless, my friend«