Robert Wendeborn (°1983, Farmington, United States) creates performances, drawings, and mixed media artworks. By applying a poetic and often metaphorical language, Wendeborn wants to amplify the astonishment of the spectator by creating compositions or settings that generate tranquil poetic images that leave traces and balances on the edge of recognition and alienation. His performances focus on the inability of communication which is used to visualise reality, the attempt of dialogue, the dissonance between form and content and the dysfunctions of language. In short, the lack of clear references are key elements in the work.
By investigating language on a meta-level, he tries to grasp language. Transformed into art, language becomes an ornament. At that moment, lots of ambiguities and indistinctnesses, which are inherent to the phenomenon, come to the surface.
His works are often classified as part of the new romantic movement because of the desire for the local in the unfolding globalized world. However, this reference is not intentional, as this kind of art is part of the collective memory.
By referencing romanticism, grand-guignolesque black humour and symbolism, he creates work through labour-intensive processes which can be seen explicitly as a personal exorcism ritual. They are inspired by a nineteenth-century tradition of works, in which an ideal of ‘Fulfilled Absence’ was seen as the pinnacle.
His works appear as dreamlike images in which fiction and reality meet, well-known tropes merge, meanings shift, past and present fuse. Time and memory always play a key role. By parodying mass media by exaggerating certain formal aspects inherent to our contemporary society, he makes works that can be seen as self-portraits.
Sometimes they appear idiosyncratic and quirky, at other times, they seem typical by-products of American superabundance and marketing.
His works are saturated with obviousness, mental inertia, clichés and bad jokes. They question the coerciveness that is derived from the more profound meaning and the superficial aesthetic appearance of an image. With a subtle minimalistic approach, he creates work in which a fascination with the clarity of content and an uncompromising attitude towards conceptual and minimal art can be found. The work is aloof and systematic and a cool and neutral imagery is used.
His practice provides a useful set of allegorical tools for manoeuvring with a pseudo-minimalist approach in the world of performance: these meticulously planned works resound and resonate with images culled from the fantastical realm of imagination.
Just kidding guys. This isn't actually my artist statement, but an online autowriter of artist statements. You fill out this form, hit the button, and it shoots out a little piece of writing. The cool part is when it actually says something cool, like "personal exorcism ritual" and "Fulfilled Absence".