Tim Berresheim: Scarecrows

Scheuche (wood) IX    /    Scheuche (wood) VIII
Print on wood


Tim Berresheim typically confronts his artistic eye with the potential for digital art, mutating traditional methods and combining media like photography, painting, and collage with digital technology. The artist’s methods holds unlimited possibilities of production through automation, whilst portraying his deep understanding of the pre-media art within its historical context, playing with the Western iconography in order to explore, critique, and illustrate the contemporary relationship between art and technology. His abstracted line work is explained as ‘tangled compositions’ that evoke a likeness with expressive brushstrokes, and yet, “they reveal themselves as precise three-dimensional digital renderings. Berresheim takes these juxtapositions a step further by printing his images by inkjet onto wood and therewith combining the technologically astute digital quality of his work with an organic and traditional printing surface.” [1]

Berresheim lives and works in Aachen, Germany and can be considered as one of the main protagonists of contemporary, computer-generated art. Whilst he is working as an artist and musician, he is also founder of the record label and project space named New Amerika. He produced a series of works in 2007, including Adrastus Collection’s Scheuche (wood) IX and Scheuche (wood) VIII, both of which encompass this idea of traditional panel painting with computer-generated imagery. In the pictures, the print has a brush-like imagery, however the artist creates a feather effect for its final touch. The images are situated in three-dimensional, illusionistic space as the print on wood has a great sense of depth and color, each feather a different color and shape.  His earlier works were made from elaborate sets that were constructed in his studio, and more recently the artist works with state-of-the-art CGI and DGI technology. They are plausible, as Berresheim himself describes them, in that physical and natural laws are followed, obeyed and underpin the representations of the constructed fantastical imagery.[2] Particularly in these two works, one can visualize the low-technology style used to mimic that of Renaissance painting, shown in these feather-like strokes that give shape to brushstroke rather than a bird. Ironically this is also teased in the title Scheuche that translates to Scarecrow.

In Tim Berresheim’s photographic work, the manipulation is not the center of attraction, but an offensively formulated practice, as he repeats it in other works in later years. However with a slightly surrealistic twist, his collages Future Gipsy Antifolklore IV and Future Gipsy Antifolklore VIII 2010, are also within the Adrastus Collection and present a style that has been defined as modern digital post-Internet art.[3] Berresheim continues his exploration into the relationship between technology and painting, resulting in a dynamic group of works that alternate between abstraction and figuration.  Scheuche (wood) IX and Scheuche (wood) VIII display his fascination with images of graphically rendered hair that can be decontextualized to create startling and bizarre juxtapositions. His bold use of color and strong use of line define these works, employing technology in an inventive new way. In a style akin to that of Albert Oehlen or Christopher Wool, Berresheim challenges the history of mark making and the status of painting in an embrace of new media.

Tim Berresheim (b. 1975, Heinsberg, Germany)is one of the most important protagonists of contemporary computer generated art. He studied at the Hochschule der Bildende Künste in Braunschweig (1998 – 2000) and the Kunstakademie in Düsseldorf (2000 – 2002). Recent solo exhibitions include: Suspension of Disbelief, Neuer Aachener Kunstverein, Aachen, Germany, Smashin’ Time II, Kunst Raum Riehen, Riehen, Switzerland, (2018); Smashin’ Time, Kunst & Denker Contemporary, Düsseldorf, Germany; Auf der Pirsch, Galerie Reinhard Hauff, Stuttgart, Germany, (2017); Revisiting the Vaults, C/O, Aachen, Germany, Aus alter Wurzel neue Kraft, Meliksetian Briggs, Los Angeles CA, USA (2016); Tim Berrresheim: 2003-2015, Ludwig Forum, Aachen, Germany, (2015); Auge und Welt, Kunstverein Düsseldorf, Germany, (2014); Tarnen & Täuschen: too long; didn’t read SOS, Galerie Thomas Flor, Berlin, Germany, (2012); Die Dämmerung, Kunstmuseum Celle, Germany, (2011); Future Gipsy Antifolklore What?!, Marc Jancou Contemporary, New York NY, USA, The Guilty Pleasure, Patrick Painter Inc., Santa Monica CA, USA; Out from Here and Now, Galerie Hammelehle and Ahrens, Cologne, Germany; Opening Kunsthalle Gießen, Giessen, Germany (2010). Recent group exhibitions include: LIGHT BOX – 18 aktuelle Positionen, Kunstmuseum Celle, Germany, Geheimnis der Dinge; Malstücke, Beck & Eggeling International Fine Art, Düsseldorf, Germany; Die Macht der Vervielfaeltigung, Museu de Arte do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, Brazil; Mixed Realities, Virtuelle und reale Welten in der Kunst, Kunstmuseum Stuttgart, Germany; Brisante Träume, Die Kunst der Weltausstellung, Marta, Herford, Germany; Becoming Animal, Den Frie Udstillingsbygning, Copenhagen, Denmark, (2018); The Happy Fainting Of Painting #2, Galerie Krobath, Vienna, Au stria; Kunstgegen Hunger, Langen Foundation, Neuss, Germany, (2017); the real-fake.org.02, Bronx Art Space, New York NY, USA; Digital Museum Of Digital Art, Satellite Art Show, Miami FL, USA (2016). He lives and works in Aachen.

[1] “Tim Berresheim.” Sedition, www.seditionart.com/tim-berresheim.

[2] “Tim Berresheim.” Meliksetian, www.meliksetianbriggs.com/artists/tim-berresheim.

[3] Holzwarth, Hans Werner. Art Now Vol. 3. Köln: Taschen, 2008. p. 60