Große Brinkgasse 17-19, 50672 Cologne, Germany



GALERIE ANJA KNOESS shows a display of contrasting work by American and German based artist Sarah McRae Morton (1984) and Beijing based German artist Martin Wehmer (1968). Both painters'works reveal an intellectual and sophisticated approach with continuing concern for foundational philosophies of modernist painting, representation and how the physical reality of the world is addressed in the act and result of painting, as well as its appearance as contemporary commentary.

Sarah McRae Morton’s work appears as a surreal revisiting of 19th century painting. There is symbolism in the language of the paint application, passages that appear like vignettes of former era in art refer to the theme of history repeating itself. Her compositions are both dreamlike and haunting, at once familiar and comforting, provocative and unsettling. There is a focus on formal aspects of composition to build narratives, but very important is the evidence of observation and the underlying – actually based — political commentary.

Martin Wehmer, who is deeply devoted to the act of painting has considered carefully its continued relevancy in examining ways of seeing, using painterly vocabulary of Abstract Expressionism, including complex pictorial structuring and color relationships. While the architecture of his work clearly utilizes the lineage of Non-Objective Art, the works are still primarily situated in the context of figuration and representation. Wehmer is rigorous in addressing modernist art and sophisticated in his method and thinking. However, he doesn’t pursue a formally reductionist agenda for an accounting of his shifting interests and repeated returns to representation and ongoing engagement of the figure.

Sarah McRae Morton
The Last Green Quagga
2017, Oil on canvas, 160 x 110 cm
Sarah McRae Morton
The Last Orangerie, after Kaethe Kollwitz
2018, Oil on canvas, 100 x 100 cm.
Sarah McRae Morton
The Bow, the Stern, and the Tail
2017, Oil on canvas, 76 x 101 cm.
Sarah McRae Morton
The Rescue of the Alabaster Whale
2017, Oil on canvas, 180 x 250 cm.
Sarah McRae Morton
To Be Among the Branches
2017, Oil on canvas, 100 x 100 cm.
Martin Wehmer
Ma Tui
2016, Oil on canvas, 205 x 105 cm.
Martin Wehmer
2014, Oil on canvas, 160 x 100 cm
Martin Wehmer
Organe Pants
2016, Oil on canvas, 100 x 70 cm
Martin Wehmer
Deguo Sunwukong
2015, Oil on canvas, 160 x 195 cm