(too) Close for Comfort
110x140cm, oil on linen, unique piece, 2022
At what point does intimacy become intrusive?
When does desire become fetishisation? When is closeness too close?
Where do the lines blur and misunderstandings arise?…
and how does race play into this?
While working on this piece I was confronted with themes around fetishisation of Black, Indigenous and People of Colour.
Even in consensual, intimate relationships it’s important to reflect on the questions above.
So far the feedback on this piece can be summarised in two ways:
Most white women I’ve spoken with view the piece as sensual, beautiful, erotic.
Most Black men and women I’ve spoken with feel discomfort when viewing the piece. For them, themes of racism, intrusiveness and fetishisation came up.
As a white woman I felt very uncomfortable painting this piece as I was reflecting on the same notions.
- Anne Bengard
- Anne Bengard
- Grunewaldstraße 15
2007-2010: BA (hons) Performance Design and Practice (2:1), Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, London
Selected Group exhibitions:
‘ambivalent’ | Not A Gallery, Berlin
Schöneberg Artists | The Ballery, Berlin
Metawalls Berlin | The Embassy/Decentraland, Online
Gekaufte Liebe | Not A Gallery, Berlin
‘Faces of Depth’ | Retramp Gallery, Berlin
Berlin Mural Festival
Game Over | Berlin
‘Fetish’ | The Ballery, Berlin
‘Art Safari’ | Kliemannsland, Elsdorf
Stroke Art Fair, Munich
‘Mondo Bizzaro’ | Alte Münze, Berlin
Future Binkhorst - VR painting installation | Trefpunt Rotterdamsebaan, The Hague, The Netherlands
Spotlight on Anne Bengard | Sammlung Seibert, Berlin
Modern Panic | Truman Brewery, London, UK
Parkhaus Neukölln, Berlin
Fabifa/Anne Bengard’s Praxis | Oberschöneweide, Berlin
Fabifa/Anne Bengard | Bar Eigengrau, Berlin
Light Noise Art | Zwei Drei Raum, Berlin
Berlin Mural Festival, Berlin
Helmets for Habitat | Microsoft flagship store NYC
WE ARE PART OF CULTURE, with 100% Mensch Hauptbahnhof and travelling to 20 major train stations around Germany
THE HAUS | Berlin Art Bang, Berlin
Enter Art Foundation, 50 Contemporary Artists | Berlin
Take Over | Nau Bostik, Barcelona
‘Monster Madness’ | Slushbox Gallery, Florida, USA
‘Stopjectify’ | Gallery Different, London, UK
Modern Panic VI | Apiary Studios, London, UK
Anne’s work deals with issues around connection, intimacy and fetishisation, understanding the term ‘fetish’ in the context of behaviour, devotion, obsession and consumption. Often borderline voyeuristic, her visual language uses polarities to explore social norms, stereotypes and aims to create a sense of tension and sensuality.
Her works ask questions rather than make statements, often probing the subconscious. Anne studied Performance Design and Practice at Central Saint Martin’s College of Art and Design in London. She is a self taught painter influenced by 90s anime and old master paintings and pop surrealism. She can hold her breath for 5 minutes.
- Nein | No
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