Katharina Siegel lives and works in London and Berlin
2018 – 2020 Royal College of Art, London
Diploma in Fine Arts, Academy of Fine Arts (HGB), Leipzig 2017
Exchange Programme, Camberwell College of Art, London 2014
2017 Cc:scratch, record, liquidate, Galerie b2, Leipzig
2016 Rotary-Art-Award, Museum Schloß Schramberg
2014 Terrain Vague, Wild Palms, Kühlhaus Berlin
Selected Group Exhibitions
2020 Dirty Hands, Standpoint Gallery London
2019 Re-Staging Marketing Suite, Assembly Point Gallery, London
2019 Critical Cartographies, Marketing Suite, Filet, London
2019 New Additions of Contemporary Art to Kunstfonds 2018, Saxon State Representation, Berlin
2018 WIN/WIN – Purchases of the Cultural Foundation of the Free State of Saxony, Leipzig
2017 Glue, Netzwerk freier Berliner Projekträume, Gallery Weekend Berlin
2014 And All It’s Layers, with Gritli Faulhaber, Leipzig
2013 COPY&REPEAT, Kunsthalle der Sparkasse Leipzig 2012 Brest <> Leipzig, Landscape in Transformation, Centre d’Art Passerelle Brest
Scholarships / Residencies / Awards
2019 Scholarship by the German Academic Exchange Service, DAAD
2018 Scholarship by the Cultural Foundation of the Freestate of Saxony
2020 Ceramic Residency, Standpoint Gallery London
2019 RCA Isle of Rum Residency, Sail Britain, Scotland
2018 Privat Residency in Athens, possible through KdFS
2012 Grant Residency Neuhauser Künstmühle, Salzburg
2016 Rotary-Art-Award 2016, Rotary Club Rottweil
2012 Study Prize, HGB Leipzig
2019 Building Narrative, Cultural Interfaces and Spatial Meaning, Graduate Conference in Cultural Studies, Universidade Católica Portuguesa, Lisbon
2019 The Afterlife of the Object, European Summer School in Cultural Studies, Copenhagen
SKD, Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden
Kunsthalle der Sparkasse Leipzig
Katharina Siegel is an artist based between London and Berlin, who received a Diploma in Painting and Printmaking from the Academy of Fine Arts Leipzig and a Master in Sculpture from the Royal College of Art London.
She operates between the disciplines of contemporary art practice and critical thinking, with interests in critical art historian historiography and philosophy as well as in narrative and reflexive systems in contemporary fine art. Her multidisciplinary art practice is often research based and explores concepts of experience, space, temporality and process.
Siegel works across sculpture, drawing and writing. Taking her own drawing practice as a starting point of investigation, she focuses on the question how aesthetic experience can be (re-)presented, in order to become communicable. And more specifically, if there is an interrelationship between aesthetic perception and aesthetic production that manifests itself in the artistic process as a response to an aesthetic experience of one's own presence. Every response makes references. References to what affects us, that is to say, to what attracts, moves or "hits" us.
In philosophy, these references are described using terms such as meaning, intention, attention, and affection. What they all have in common is that they are something we can not control but something that guides and directs us. Drawing in a notational manner is for Siegel a way to translate experience into a medium, a graphic utterance as a trace, which is constantly shifting, condensing, dissolving and being re-understood. Her interest in the critical role attributed to notational practices in terms of how we think in the arts has influenced her ideas of what images are or signs show. Notational practices take on a role that help to transform the idea of art itself, the way it is made, discussed and received. Interested in the concept of an archive and the possibility to create knowledge, a narrative or imagery out of its material by re-arranging, repetition or transformation, she started cataloguing the fragments of her research and work process. While working with her archival material the relationship between concept, recording, repetition and work is redefined and the drafting processes themselves become autonomous works of art.
In the artistic process, the pluralistic aesthetic forms of perception and the way in which they find expression in observation, memory or description finally merge with the aesthetic enactment of the work processes itself. Siegel questions what role the artistic process, as a practice of translation of experience play in experimental spaces, in spaces of sensation and affect that can not be measured, whose parameters shift and suddenly go in other directions.
Can it make visible what we can not yet see and thus make possible what we can not yet think?
Cc:theme A (apple) — charcoal and pencil drawing on paper, 150x114cm
Cc:theme A (apple) - [Detail]
Cc:theme B (critical zone) — charcoal and pencil drawing on paper, 150x114cm
Cc:theme B (critical zone) - [Detail]
Medium:charcoal and pencil drawing on paper
Sit there, I‘ll see what I can bring you. [Acropolis Walk] — GPS tracked walk to the Acopolis 2018, as part of an artist-in-residence in Athens, charcoal drawing 21x29,7cm
Pages From The Archive [Acropolis Walk] — 1)Language and Cartographie, sketchbook, sign systhem for german prefixes and verbs, 2)Greek pottery with representations of the athlete carrying jumping weights, 500 BC, The athletes carried weights (halteres) in their hands to improve the jump. Haltere were usually made from stone or bronze in a variety of shapes. Athletes threw the halteres backwards as they landed, thus gaining a little extra push at the end of the long jump. Halter or haltere from ancient greek: (weights held in the hands to give an impetus in leaping), 3)Book Reviews: Aesopic Conversations: Popular Tradition, Cultural Dialogue, and the Invention of Greek Prose by Leslie Kurke, 4)Jumping Weights, Technical drawing for ceramic objects, 2020, 21x29,7cm
Sit there, I'll see what I can bring you. [Ladder] — Archive ladder with hinged book shelf 2020, 180x40,60cm, cherry wood, labeled tention strap
Pages From The Archive [Ladder] — 1)The Liberal Arts Studiolo, From The Ducal Palace At Gubbio, Frederico Da Montefeltro, 2)Plate 33: Spandau Castle Wall, Bronze horse before restoration in two views and after restoration, scale 2.5: 1. 3)From: The System of Objects by Jean Baudrillard, B. The non functional system or subjective discourse, II. A Marginal System: Collecting, 4)Technical drawing for ladder, 2019-20, 21x29,7cm
Sit there, I'll see what I can bring you. [Table] — Table/Display 2020, 200x105,65cm, cherry and ash wood, steel
Pages From The Archive [Table] — 1)The Liberal Arts Studiolo, From The Ducal Palace At Gubbio, Frederico Da Montefeltro, 3) Sketch for drawers, 2019, 21x29,7cm, 4)Sketch for table, 2020, 21x29,7cm, 5)Sketch for drawers, 2018, 21x14cm
These streets lead like the aisles which run between the bookshelves of an extensive library. As seen from the street, each line of shut windows is the glass door to another bookshelf. The closed front doors of varnished wood are the drawers of the library catalogue. Behind these walls everything is waiting to be read. I call them her archive streets.[...]
What is waiting to be read on the shelves in the archive streets is private, unprecedented ans almost weightless. Archives are different from book libraries. Libraries are made up of bound volumes, whose every page has been repeatedly reread and corrected. Archives often consist of papers which were originally abandoned or laid aside.
Genèves passion is for discovering, cataloguing and checking what was laid aside.
No wonder she's short-sighted. No wonder she arms herself — even when asleep — against pity.[...]
What does Genèves passion bring her? It assuages her insatiable curiosity. A curiosity which has nothing — or very little — to do with inquisitiveness or gossip. She is neither concierge, nor judge. Genève is observer, fascinated by the sheer variety of human predicaments and consolations.
Confronted with any situation, however outrageous, she is capable of muttering »I know« and then of adding gently: Sit there, I‘ll see what I can bring you.
John Berger, here is where we met, Bloomsbury Publishing, 2005
Medium:A4 Archival Material, 3D rendered images
Jumping Weight I - Top piece I — London 27th February 2020, Standpoint Gallery
Jumping Weight IV - Top piece I — Berlin 27th April 2020
Jumping Weights I, II
Jumping Weight II - Side piece II — London 26th February 2020, Standpoint Gallery
Jumping Weight III — London 1st March 2020, Standpoint Gallery
Jumping Weight III
Variation Study — based on Jumping Weight I, Berlin 27th April 2020
Jumping Weight I — London 26th February 2020, Standpoint Gallery
Medium:Pen on graph paper
Size:A4 - 29,7x21cm
Jumping Weights - [Detail]
Jumping Weights - [Offcuts]
Jumping Weights - [unglazed]
By re-reading Heidegger it came back to my mind: "Thinking acts by thinking."1
Philosophical thinking in Heidegger's sense is "future thinking" — thinking in tension towards the future from which its presentness receives its motion. Let's consider this motion as a jump! Thinking is jumping out of the ordinary, jumping over a gap that cannot be bridged, jumping into the bottomless.
The jumping weight as an image that represents the momentum of the jump — the long jump that brings thinking with being into play.
1) Martin Heidegger, Letter on Humanism
Medium:fired and glazed clay
Untitled Painting — spray paint and oil on paper, 150x114cm
Untitled Painting - [Detail]
Medium:spray paint and oil on paper
Horse — Drawing on charcoal paper, mountend on window - [RCA]
Where was I standing, hot cobblestone underfoot, wanting to look at the village church on top of the hill, hot-blue sky, light wind, maybe a swarm of shrieking swifts.
Where did I walk through the narrow alley full of crumbling plaster, it smells of mouldy shade, pleasantly the taste of cellar damp on my lips.
Where was I, numb in sticky half-sleep, mutely angry at something absent, imposing its presence on me.
Language, words, memory, premonition — awareness of the time that has passed.
I lay there, in the faint dusk, on white sheets, the pillows and blankets heaped against the wall, wrinkled, musty and enclosing, bare legs stretched, motionless, in the thick air of my room.
Reclining like stranded wood, I look at the skin and try to remember the feeling of sun by the sea, how the feet dig unnoticed into the sand, while one's just lying there and no longer feel oneself.
The things that once had meaning have become lifeless props.
In their piled formation, they seem lumbering and strange, deprived of function, deposed. A desire so strong that it hinders itself, the body that wants to be body.
Outside, a sound collage, continuously swelling and subsiding, covers everything.
Today, for a brief moment, I was able to filter out the slight rustling of leaves as I passed by, afflicted by the realisation of the other hidden reality, desired and almost impossible to grasp. From an unknown corner the smell of this reality blows, eventually. Volatile. But long enough to be aware of it.
Filter, sieve, zoom — capture the impression. Hot cobblestone.
A veil of sensations — transparent and firm. Layering of realities.
Childhood memories that are not memories, but a flicker, a waft, a flow, sensations that belong to indeterminate moments, dreams perhaps — half asleep states, clotted, tenacious, thick-bodied states of the body.
When was the last time you breathed deeply?
Ronja's spring cry. Repels the thick layer of constriction, freed from the strenuous mastery of her duties.
A callus on the hand grows in good hours, hurts. In benevolent consideration, it is result of being. Being there in your own being. Insignificance is noticeable everywhere.
Small fruit fly, brownish yellow-red and transparent, crawling over the light-gray painted table, tries to sip from my glass.
When was I lying in an unknown bed in my own apartment?
Late summer afternoon when the sun barely hits the angle to cast my favourite light on the wall. For seven years.
The mullion, distorted in a flickering projection thrown against the wall.
A leafy pattern in bright yellow, refracted by a wafting piece of wrapping paper,
attached in the upper left casement frame.
Only the stumpy screws, which once carried large picture frames, are left over.
The footage of misty landscapes, at that time.
A hazy blurred scenery as a projection screen for the distorted light play.
A momentum of a phenomenon that expands the time frame of the present to a supposed past.
Every day the birth of one's own tragedy.
The pictures inside me on the wall. Transmission. Shift. Towards what? Continuously.
Yes. Next, please!
Is it actually late summer? Is the paper not moved by rising radiator heat?
When did the foggy landscape leave me? Kounellis's prostheses are still locked in the box until today.
A walking aid — my walking aid.
Who are you sleeping with at the moment, Mrs. Siegel?
And again a picture — small — crosshatched drawn — legs — a window — bluey-green — emerges briefly.
Late summer, this time on the Adriatic.
It's muggy and the white wine puts me in a pleasant inertia.
Considering a life, a brief episode of the past has moved to an infinite distance.
A few days ago, a letter arrived. I opened the mailbox automatically, like every day.
Click — key in - open close - click — key out. I live here!
My mail does not arrive in the mailbox. Everything arranged differently.
And yet. The one, longed for, even delivered to the front door.
Home has been through many stations, many states of being, soft material deformed.
I enjoyed the thought, things change, deform over time, become void, inscribe in themselves what they have been, leaving their mark.
Change of gaze.
How are you recognized?
You are constantly prepared for the appearance of beauty.1
1) Peter Handke, Gestern unterwegs – Aufzeichnungen 1987 – 1990, Die Vertreibung aus der Phantasie, Woran bist du zu erkennen? Daran, dass du stetig vorbereitet bist auf das Erscheinen der Schönheit.