SEBASTIAN WICKEROTH

SEBASTIAN WICKEROTH

The concepts of transition and transformation and their relation to color, forms and matter can be described as main subjects of Sebastian Wickeroth’s recent works. By combining elements of painting, sculpture and architecture, Geometrical shapes are in deconstruction and seem to join together.

Corrosion counters the monochrome perfection, generating a narrative. The ruinous pictorial space surveys suggest logic and causality of incidences that never happened. It`s not about the destruction of a sculpture, but to create decomposition as an equal mode of construction. Seemingly accidental and unregulated occurrences emerge as composed structures.

Born in 1977, Sebastian Wickeroth currently lives and works in Düsseldorf, Germany. He studied at the Kunstakademie Münster, at the École Supérieure des Beaux-Arts of Geneva, and at the Kunstakademie in Düsseldorf. He recently became a professor at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts of Dortmund and the Peter Behrens School of Arts in Düsseldorf.

For inquiries

    Born in 1977
    Currently works and lives in Düsseldorf, Germany

    COLLECTIONS

    Museum für Konkrete Kunst, Ingolstadt, Germany
    Sammlung Kunst aus NRW, Aachen-Kornelimünster, Germany
    Sammlung der Mediantis AG, Tutzing, Germany
    Inside-out Art Museum, Beijing, China
    Centre d`art contemporaine, Venniseux, France
    The Swatch Art Peace Hotel, Shanghai, China

    SOLO / DUO EXHIBITIONS

    2021
    Vanishing Point, Galerie Paris-Beijing, Paris, France

    2019
    Raw feels, Multimedia Art Museum, Moscow, Russia
    Perpetual Dawn, 3:e Våningen, Gothenburg, Sweden

    2018
    matter // constant, Galerie Paris-Beijing, Paris

    2017
    Eurobilder, E9A, Fribourg (avec Billy Gruner)

    2015
    Rise and shine, Galerie Ruth Leuchter, Düsseldorf, Germany
    Compound spaces (Ich tue das beste, was ich kann, unter der Berücksichtigung dessen, was du tust), Vitrinen, Köln, Germany
    Back and forth, forever, snap-projects, Lyon, France

    2014
    Warp, dh artworks, Düsseldorf, Germany

    2013
    Triplestar, Inside Out Art Museum, Beijing, China

    2012
    Soiled structures, GKG, Bonn (in company with Kai Richter), Germany
    SNO 89, SNO, Sydney, Autralia

    2011
    Nadir, graphisches Kabinett, Düsseldorf, Germany
    Becoming, Förderverein aktuelle Kunst FAK, Münster, Germany
    My way or the highway, Bruch & Dallas, Köln, Germany

    2010
    Young artists, award, Aachen-Kornelimünster Kunst aus NRW, Germany
    S_MELT #2, hall of fame, Tilburg (in company with Andre Pielage), Netherlands
    Colours fade, The Briggait, Glasgow, Scotland

    2009
    Superposition, Kunst-Station Sankt Peter, Köln, Germany
    Szenenwechsel, Museum für konkrete Kunst, Ingolstadt, Germany
    Hell Feld, Kunsthaus, Essen (in company with Christian Forsen), Germany

    2008
    Draft, Mogosoaia palace, Bucharest, Romania
    Fragile, H29, Brussels (in company with Clemens Hollerer), Belgium

    2007
    Form fucks function, Konsortium, Düsseldorf, Germany

    SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS

    2020
    Non-sculpture, Lights of flexible, 2020 Changwon Sculpture Biennale, Republic of Korea
    Tamara Lorenz, Lukas Marxt, Alexander Romey, Sebastian Wickeroth | UMWELTEN, SETAREH Gallery, Düsseldorf, Germany

    2019
    The Big Circle, M-17 Art Center, Kiev, Ukraine
    Paris Photo 2019, Paris, France
    Biennale International Reductive and Non Objective Art, Sydney, Australia

    2018
    Summer group show, Galerie Paris-Beijing, Paris, France

    2017
    Abstruct, Park, Tilburg
    Au hasard, Villa Balthazar, Valence
    Endless backup, FutureDome, Milan
    Mogodorf 10, Kunstraum Düsseldorf

    2016
    Run run run, Villa Arson, Nice
    Abstraction as an ageless approach, Galerie Ruth Leutcher, Düsseldorf
    Deformation Professionnelle, a project by Raphaël Denis, Galerie Paris-Beijing, Paris
    DYSTOTAL, Ludwig Forum, Aachen, Germany
    Out of shape, Maschinenhaus, Essen, Germany
    Offenes depot, Kunsthaus NRW, Kornelimünster, Germany
    F*** Newton, Karst, Plymouth, UK
    Grijs-Grey, Galerie de Meerse, Hoofddorp, Netherlands
    Nonobstant, SUPER, Nozay, France

    2015
    Momentum BND, ECI Cultuur Fabriek, Roermond, Netherlands
    Sans titre, Un-spaced, Paris, France
    SOON, snap-projects, Brüssel, Belgium
    Meta-mistakes, Radial Art Contemporain, Strasbourg, France
    We are all looking for astronauts, WE, Shanghai, China
    UN_FORMED, PS Projectspace, Amsterdam, Netherlands

    2014
    30/30 image archive project, AB contemporary gallery, Zurich, Switzerland
    30/30 image archive project, noi, Dolceacqua, Italy
    Sie und Ihre Ausstellungen, Aachen-Kornelimünster, Kunst aus NRW, Germany
    Géométrie Immatérielle, Un-spaced (hosted by gallery Xenon), Bordeaux, France
    Frequences and Forms, snap-projects, Lyon, France
    Raving Disco Dolly On A Rock N`Roll Trolley, New York, USA
    Rise and shine“ Galerie Ruth Leuchter, Düsseldorf, Germany

    2013
    Grosse Kunstausstellung, Museum Kunstpalast, Düsseldorf, Germany
    S(ch)ichtwechsel, Museum für konkrete Kunst, Ingolstadt, Germany
    Octahedron – in the absence of one man” SÌM, Reykjavik, Iceland
    Billo Bäm, Künstlerhaus, Dortmund, Germany
    Poste Concret, ParisCONCRET, Paris, France
    Kunstsalon Flingern, spam contemporary, Düsseldorf, Germany
    Moiras Planschränke, Raketenstation Hombroich, Neuss, Germany
    SNO 100“ SNO, Sydney, Australia

    2012
    Junger Westen, Kunsthalle, Recklinghausen, Germany
    The Reality of the Unbuilt, Raketenstation Hombroich, Neuss, Germany
    Herbst.Zeit.Lose, GKG, Bonn, Germany
    Topits, Kunstwerk, Köln, Germany
    30/30 image archive project, Le Moinsun, Paris, France

    2011
    Zentrale, Stadthausgalerie, Münster, Germany
    Construction-site, CON-SUM, Düsseldorf, Germany
    Invited” Klaus Benden gallery, Köln, Germany
    Raumbilder Bildräume, Kunstverein, Gelsenkirchen, Germany
    Back from Glasgow, AaE, Düsseldorf, Germany
    Junger Westen, Kunsthalle, Recklinghausen, Germany

    2010
    New talents, kreative Energie, Landesvertretung NRW, Berlin, Germany
    A change of air, Arcade E.A.P, Nicosia, Cyprus
    The castle of discipline, mischpoke, Mönchengladbach, Germany
    30/30 image archive project, PS, Amsterdam, Netherlands
    Und 6 Intercontinental, Schwartz Gallery, London, UK
    You and Now, Gallery Balice Hertling, Paris, France

    2009
    Back from, Atelier am Eck, Düsseldorf, Germany
    Minimal-maximal, Gallery Andreas Grimm, Munich, Germany
    Grauzone, Künstlerverein Malkasten, Düsseldorf, Germany
    K.O.nsens, Kunstraum Blast, Köln, Germany
    Blok, Schloss Ringenberg, Hamminkeln, Germany
    NordWestKunstpreis, Kunsthalle, Wilhelmshaven, Germany

    2008
    Do you have expectations?, Wartesaal, Zurich, Switzerland
    Würdest du bitte endlich still sein, bitte, Dina4 Projekte, Munich, Germany
    2, camp, Düsseldorf, Germany
    New talents, biennale, Köln, Germany
    Highlights of german academies, Dina4 Projekte, Berlin, Germany
    Unsculptured, Atelier35, Bucharest, Romania
    Kleinere Arbeiten, Raum500, Munich, Germany

    2007
    Große Kunstausstellung, Haus der Kunst, Munich, Germany
    Stahl im Sturm, glue, Berlin, Germany
    Das Gesetz der guten Gestalt, KKB, Berlin, Germany
    Junger Westen, Kunsthalle, Recklinghausen, Germany

    2006
    Exile on cottage street, Temporary, Düsseldorf, Germany
    Das letzte Wort der Kunst, Kunsthalle, Düsseldorf, Germany
    Wir waren mal Freunde gewesen, Gloriahalle, Düsseldorf, Germany
    Contemporary zoomansicht, Meisterhaus1, Düsseldorf, Germany

    2005
    Vous êtes ici, Gallery Palais de l´Athénée, Geneva, Switzerland

    AWARDS

    2018
    Lepsien Art Foundation award, Düsseldorf, Germany
    travel grant of the state NRW, Beijing, China
    Residencia Artística FAAP, Sao Paulo, Brazil
    “AIR“ Multimedia Art Museum, Moscow, Russia

    2017
    GNMH award, Seoul
    AIR, CCA Andratx, Mallorca, Spain

    2015
    AIR, The Swatch Art Peace Hotel, Shanghai, China

    2014
    Rondo fellowship, Austria

    2013
    SIM Residency, Reykjavik, Island
    Project grant, Inside – Out Art Museum, Beijing, China

    2012
    Travel grant of the state NRW, Sydney, Australia

    2010
    AIR, Wasps Studios, Glasgow, Scotland
    Young artists, award, Aachen, Germany

    2009
    Schloss Ringenberg scholarship, Germany
    Project grant, Kunststiftung NRW, Germany

    2008
    AIR, Mogosoaia palace, Bucharest, Romania

    2007
    Haus der Kunst Preis, Munich, Germany

    Text by Tobias Hoffmann

    In the early 20th century the Russian suprematists and the Dutch De Stijl group started revolutionizing the image notion. Works of art would detach themselves from the standing requirement of reproducing reality and turn into autonomous or, as Theo van Doesburg put it in 1930, concrete works. Geometric form and surface ratios became the fundament of an omnipresent and self-evident artistic language of modernism. Following the European Avant-garde movement of the constructivists in the 20s and 30s, particularly the Zurich Concrete Art representatives headed by Max Bill, Richard Paul Lohse and Camille Graeser intensified and systemized in the 40s and 50s the critical dealing with this canon of forms. During the 50s, however, a controversial position developed in parallel against too stringent an adherence to the given geometric forms. This may certainly be considered as a system-immanent criticism for the traditional method of image creation was not at all questioned by those artists who used to rigorously reject it. There was rather the fear of the image language to be freezing that induced the attempt to find different geometry-based possibilities for enlarging the form canon. Lucio Fontana, for example, intervened in the monochrome rectangular image surface by slitting the canvas, thus breaking the strict geometry and bending the image surface into the third dimension. Also Christian Megert’s starting point is a monochrome surface for the mirror, Megert’s primary working material, is initially monochrome unless it reflects something. Megert breaks and cuts his mirrors into cullets to disintegrate their originally geometric form. Both artists reinforce their dealing with geometrical forms through disintegration by the processes of slitting and breaking. They tackle their works almost violently and make this action visible.

    Geometric form and its concurrent disruption, destruction and deformation is also the starting point for Sebastian Wickeroth’s art. This can be the forcefully brute presentation of an implied destructive act such as in his work „strategie der steine 3“. A big rectangular block seems to have crashed to the ground from such height that one of its edges is completely shattered. Here Wickeroth plays with the zest for association of the viewer who may be unable to reject the immediately arising impression of a destructive act. Actually, however, Wickeroth does not cause destruction, he constructs destruction. His point is not the act of destruction itself but the construction of the deconstructed form. He did not smash the block in „strategie der steine 3“ by having it drop but created its deformed form right from the beginning. In this way, he addresses both the stringent geometric form and its deformation.

    In „graceful degradation“ a black rectangle simply disintegrates at its bottom. The object appears unable to retain its form. The absolutely precise shape of the upper part, which is still emphasized by an impeccably smooth surface, starts draping, becomes wrinkled and seems to melt. Wickeroth has even the substructure, the framework, randomly jut out. In these works, Wickeroth approximates the American Steven Parrino who used to deform geometric surfaces by first removing the canvas from the frame in order to re-mount it crumpled. Unlike Parrino’s, Wickeroth’s works allocate a minor role to the reflection about the image notion. He develops his works out of a sculptural perspective. Surfaces excel in extreme smoothness and perfect neutrality that refer to industrial fabrication rather than painting. Moreover, most of his installations are composed of several parts whose interaction causes a confrontation of clear geometric form with vanishing orthogonality. For example, „untitled – fragile“ consists of three equally sized black rectangles arranged horizontally on top of each other. One edge of the uppermost rectangle penetrates the one below, significantly deforming it and transferring the resulting fall of the surface’s folds down to the third rectangle.

    In his work „immer darüber hinaus“, created in 2009 for the Museum für Konkrete Kunst Ingolstadt, Wickeroth separates for the first time strict geometric form clearly from apparently formless chaos. A large geometric cube with high-gloss finished surface stands out of a pile of broken, yellow-lacquered Rigips panels. The cube’s order and the Rigips panels’ chaos, form and anti-form, oppose, accentuate and, at the same time, challenge each other. With its monochrome colour and its faultless surface – Wickeroth mounts glossy foils over a frame structure – the cube recalls the American Minimal Art whose simple geometric bodies are made of pre-fabricated industrial materials such as acrylic glass, stainless steel or aluminium. The glossy foil in Wickeroths works alludes to these superior materials and feigns a polished plastic body. In „vielleicht morgen“ he employs the foil so skilfully that the play between form and deformation incorporates the entire environment. The outer sides of the flat ground-based work are slightly bent downwards and distort the reflections from the surrounding room. Accordingly, the form is no longer deconstructed only in the work itself but visually affects the static architectural forms in the surroundings. The room becomes an integral component of the work ostensibly designed as an autonomous sculpture. Being viewed, the visual deformation of the room gains such dynamics that the actual form of the installation distinctly retreats into the background. Wickeroth qualifies the effect of the form without destructively reshaping it.

    How does one deal with the achievements of the historical avant-gardes in the beginning of the new century? What can the artistic understanding of forms look like today under the aspect of the long tradition of an almost overpowering geometry? With a certain brutalism, Wickeroth attacks the formalistic principles of the art of the 20th century. His works represent an ideological-critical questioning of traditional aesthetic positions as he confronts striving for order and clarity always with its contra position. In the subtitle of a work „form fucks function“ Wickeroth refers unmistakably to the historical avant-gardes. Construction, however, principally comes first. For even if his works may evoke the association that their final design has evolved from a radical gesture of destruction, it is nevertheless he who has constructed anti-form, chaos, destruction. His works unite construction and de-construction of form, the aesthetics of geometry and its invalidation, obvious formal stringency and its ironic negation by anarchy and failure. In this way, Sebastian Wickeroth manages in a refreshing way to merge Punk and Minimal in his works of art.