Stefan Kürten: Something to believe in
Nov 22 – Nov 22, 2003
Alexander and Bonin is pleased to present the second New York exhibition of works by painter Stefan Kürten. Something to believe in will include The Nearest Thing to Heaven, an encyclopedic chart of images, logos and signs emerging from a ground of color. This painting appears dyed or stained, rather than painted and, at 110 x 145 inches, is Kürten’s most ambitious work to date. Previously this painting was shown in Düsseldorf and Würzburg.
A number of his paintings have a reflective gold bronze paint surface. These works change depending on light conditions and can suggest the passage of time as experienced from morning until night. The subjects of the new paintings range from a still life to domestic interiors and landscapes. In Lonesome Valley, out-of-scale, floating plants overlay a complex architectural image inducing simultaneous feelings of attraction and claustrophobia; no figures inhabit his landscapes or interiors and their resolute stillness can be unnerving.
Of the paintings in Kürten’s last New York show, David Frankel wrote:
Pattern and color, organic form, and the processes of growth and decay appear here as a return of the repressed, a ghost in the machine-a ghost in the ideal rectangular geometries of modernist architecture…In several other paintings the sky is a featureless plane, but the plane is gold, evoking not the Miesian houses and corporate atria depicted beneath them but Byzantine or Russian icons and the religious art of medieval Europe.
Stefan Kürten (born 1963) studied at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf and the Art Institute of San Francisco. He has exhibited his work in Düsseldorf and San Francisco since 1988. Earlier this year, Museum im Kulturspeicher, Würzburg held a solo exhibition of recent paintings.
 Frankel, David. “Stefan Kürten.” Artforum (September 2002): 205.