Jochen Proehl

Long Exposure

02.11 - 09.12.2023

The starting points of the exhibited paintings often involve traces of human intervention in nature, archaeological excavations, and especially construction sites in Istanbul. The artist creates unreal, monumental, and partially reminiscent landscapes from the forms found in these areas in his paintings. As a result, Proehl no longer associates his images with a specific place but creates generalizations: earth anatomies. Objectively, the earth holds the oldest myths and worldviews in the history of civilization. Therefore, it is the locus of the chthonic cycle, the idea that all life originates from the earth and is reclaimed by the earth. Consequently, Proehl’s work is not concerned with a specific moment but rather with “accumulated time” (Proehl).

Much like long exposure photographs where objects present in the frame for a much shorter duration than the exposure time become invisible in the final photograph, Proehl excludes everything in the world that exists only temporarily in his large format paintings. Therefore, in these paintings, the viewer encounters nothing related to nature, humans, the past, or the future. Only in his works that contain archaeological references do the traces of lost civilizations from a distant time emerge in the present of the paintings. However, even these details provide a sign of extended temporal dimensions within an abstracted pictorial context.