Norbert Schwontkowski

24. Feb. – 18. März 2023
Caprii, Düsseldorf

Norbert Schwontkowski opens a new syllogistic season in Caprii.

One artist, one work: within the framework of Caprii’s new exhibition series, each artist extends the invitation to the following, creating a self-sustained exhibitive ecosystem. In redistributing decision-making and enlivening artists in a direct dialogue with each other, the elements of each reflected in the other become tangle. The singular exhibitions culminate in a yearly publication, thereby offering manifold moments to trace the relational resonances within contemporary art production.

One particular work by the late Bremer artist Norbert Schwontkowski is to be seen from February 24th – March 25th 2023, in Caprii’s home in the Orangeriestr. 6.

The oeuvre of Norbert Schwontkowski is deceptively simple, at once playful and melancholy, naïve and sophisticated. He devoted himself to the central themes of human existence as well as to the small absurdities of everyday life, mastering the game of allusions and the surreal. His poetic and humorous works always seem to balance on the edge of the abyss.

[…] most of my paintings come from a dream, which is never fixed. It is more like the feeling when you are traveling on a train without a destination, or in the early morning when you just wake, when you are still in between a dream and the thoughts of what you have to do for the day—like what sort of shirt and pants you will wear and who you’ll see for lunch, and so on. Essentially, it comes from a moment when there is not so much control of your thoughts or what you could actually see. Your eyes are open and you think you can see whatever’s in front of you, but in fact there is something from this corner of your vision, which somehow melts together and becomes something you can’t identify whatsoever. I think this is the way poetry works, by allowing things to come together and bloom and become something else, something fresh and alive.

NORBERT SCHWONTKOWSKI with Phong Bui originally published by The Brooklyn Rail, Issue Dec 2009–Jan 2010

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