Stefan Brüggemann
Make Me Paintings Make Me Paintings Make Me Paintings
Make Me Paintings

The works combine Brüggemann’s concern with painterly gesture as a form of performative action and his commitment to working in situ.

In each canvas, the spraypainted statement make me is completed by the verbs see, think, and feel. Each completed sentence commands the reader or viewer to undertake a performative action, since it seeks to induce a change in the sensory perception of the writer. It is of course a futile demand, since the audience and the artist are unlikely to come together before the work.

The second aspect of the paintings addresses the mutability of display, signified by the relationship between the work and the context of the gallery-space, a recurring theme in the artist’s oeuvre. Each painting is made on site, and a large part of the writing exceeds the boundaries of the canvas. After the exhibition, once the canvas is removed or sold, the residue of text remains on the gallery wall, to be overpainted prior to the next exhibition. Outside of the original exhibition site the displaced canvases have thus ‘lost’ the writing that does not fit within its frame. In this way, Brüggemann points to the differences between a classic or hermetic work of art and the event of an exhibition. Here, the work is explicitly altered by the gesture or action of its display.

The Make Me series is extended by works in neon in which the tubes are fixed to a wall and spraypainted with the words of the title. The action blanks out sections of the neon light emanating from the unit, and extends the writing across the surface of the supporting wall.