Charlotte Eschenlohr „STRANGE PURENESS“

„Chinese pattern“, „Mosaique chinoise“, „Xin and Jie drawings“, „Tiger series“, „Dragon fly“, ... Many work series of Charlotte Eschenlohr do have Chinese references in their title and most of them do have Chinese elements in their composition. There is definitely a very strong influence from the „country of the middle” to the work of the German painter Charlotte Eschenlohr.
In her childhood she saw her grandmother wearing traditional Chinese clothes when her grandparents came home after having been living in China for several years. She grew up surrounded by beautiful porcelain and furniture from China, which was rather unusual in these years. All these early influences in her life left a strong fascination to her.

Charlotte Eschenlohr used to keep different working places and so she regularly turned back to her studio in Point B, New York, where she spent intense stays for painting twice or three times a year. When 2011 followed the first invitation to rent a studio in Beijing, this fruitful occupation with China started in the artistic work of Charlotte Eschenlohr.
It seemed that all which used to be there in small seeds or grains started to come into form in the three following years after this first studio stay in Beijing. She turned back to Beijing regularly once or twice a year and every time her approach to tradition and life in China got more self-evident in her work.

The way how Charlotte Eschenlohr is using the Chinese elements like tigers, the appearance of her models, written parts in Chinese characters or last but not least the pandas, is very unique as she is combining traditional spirit with her style. Crucial for the language of Charlotte Eschenlohr is her sense of humour and easiness. To these two attributes can be added openness which is a personal quality of Charlotte Eschenlohr, self-confidence and sensuality. Here we have the main attributes in her artistic work.

In her most recent series which will be shown in the exhibition „STRANGE PURENESS” at Matthias Küper Galleries Stuttgart | Beijing in Caochangdi, she is using contrary elements of tradition, referring to pureness like a Buddha, sculptures of Chinese warriors or the tiger which stands for bravery and the courageous and fiery fighter, together with sensual elements like the figures of her two models or images from western fashion labels. These combinations, which are totally normal in the daily perception of the images in a city like Beijing, bring charged images which do not miss any challenging tension in a painting.
The artist proves again her talent for combining eastern and western elements and bringing them together to an intelligent statement presented with the easiness of her brushstrokes.

Charlotte Eschenlohr is very welcoming for images. When seeing them and registering them with her camera, she has the ability to sense them into her works. Sometimes she is taking a picture of an existing picture: These images then come into form in her mind in order to serve as a base for her paintings.
The photographs come from different places – on her residency in Beijing in autumn 2012, Charlotte Eschenlohr had many printed images from her last stay in NY in her luggage, which she took to Beijing in order to serve as base for her works. They resulted into the “Tiger series”. In almost the same manner, she took images from China back to her Munich studio, which have been transformed in the following months into the “Changing habits” series.

“Images which can be found in other images” is a justifiable term in the work of Charlotte Eschenlohr. The interesting detail is how she is treating them and how some of them are repeatedly coming back into her paintings like memories coming back into our minds. Her repertoire can be seen like a code of wordings – her vocabulary. But this vocabulary is decoded – we can see the images and get an idea of their meaning, however she is not delivering the answers.