* 1953 in Stuttgart, DE
lives and works in Stuttgart
exhibitions at Michael Sturm Gallery:
If we try to understand Herbert Egl’s paintings on their own terms—self-referentially, as it were—they can be said to derive from an attitude from the early years of his work as an artist that could be described as “lyrical abstraction.” His works remain lyrical and abstract, but their hetero-reference has drastically increased in recent years. Egl’s paintings are abstract, but they are not what has been, in the wake of abstraction, called nonobjective painting. His paintings always have an object; they establish relationships to a wide variety of micro- and macroscopic systems of reference.
In his paintings, color paves its own way, and it is not really clear whether this path is due to its inherent dynamic or to the artist’s hand. Then again Herbert Egl also expands painting in a wonderfully associative way, but integrating abstract photographs or exposes the entire canvas after making it photosensitive. This results in amoebas and veriform appendixes, tentacles, organs, pathogenic patterns. They might be monumental paintings of microscopic photographs but might as easily be geological or urban structures photographed from a height of five thousand meters.
His works are “transformations,” “displacements,” “event horizons,” as revealed by the titles of his works and cycles. These titles also seem to identify Herbert Egl’s driving force as an artist as well: an impulse that understands the creation of an image as an organic process, both as a painting and as a motif.