05/30 – 06/02/2024

Watermarks. Comics featuring the fluid element

Anyone who makes comics must be able to abstract. But this is not about abstraction as a concept, as found in painting or other visual arts. Abstraction in comics has a narrative function: how do you reduce the complexity of reality without simplifying it? How can you create a vivid image with a few strokes, hatching or color?

The exhibition is dedicated to these technical aspects of drawing and allows artistic reflections on technique and material. Using the example of the depiction of water in comics, a variety of ways of capturing this fluid element on the page are shown. Comics and illustrations from very different eras, regions of the world and styles are juxtaposed: Camille Jourdy meets Will Eisner. Martin tom Dieck enters into a dialog with Catherine Meurisse, Suehiro Maruo and Loustal. Jacques Tardi meets Hervé Tanquerelle and Emmanuel Lepage. Other artists represented in the exhibition are Winsor McCay, Dominique Goblet and Kai Pfeiffer, Davide Reviati, Olivier Schwartz and Barbara Yelin. The selection is rounded off by two animated films by Tove Jansson and Hayao Miyazaki. They are all united by the masterful depiction of an element of global social significance, whose fluidity seemingly defies static depiction with brush and pencil. However, the exhibited works - some originals, some reproductions - show the aesthetic worlds that abstraction opens up and how it can change and enliven our perception of reality.

Thematically, visitors are guided through the various forms and states of water: After an excursion to oceans, seas and lakes, they are washed by a river into a misty rainy landscape. They then find themselves under water and end their walk in a world of snow and ice. The visit to the exhibition is not a purely visual experience, but also an auditory one: sound installations in the room, composed for the exhibition by the Berlin musician and cross-media artist Erich Lesovsky, amplify and expand the visual worlds evoked in the works.

Lilian Pithan


May 30 to June 2

Kunstpalais, basement

Opening hours:

Thu 12:00-19:00, Fri/Sat 10:00-19:00, Sun 10:00-17:00

Free admission with Salon-Ticket!

Vernissage: 30.05.2024