Right on the thin line of what appears “real”, as in realistically painted, and an imaginary world of unrealistic things painted against expectation (with a subversive materiality), is where Eckart Hahn resides. An object becomes the representation of the object, at the moment Hahn departs so realistically from the tactile world as we understand it, and a tension forms there in the vacuum left by Hahn’s desertion of the “actual”. Because of this schism of realistic unreality the paintings are activated, bringing a heightened awareness to the question of what the meaning might be, while still not unsealing the hermetic narratives with in. Very much in the surrealist tradition, as Hahn comes by his image through a kind of directed automatism, (a strategy that seeks to short circuit the rigors and restrictions of scientific reason and Newtonian conclusions), the viewer receives the image somewhere in the unconscious while simultaneously seeking to interpret the paintings with the analytical mind. And there we are caught in between, in a liminal space of possibility.
See Hahn’s solo show at Pablo’s Birthday in NYC through June 16th.