Guenter Limburg Text by Juergen Schoen
Why does someone become a painter and not a poet? And why does he paint in such a way and not differently? An interesting questions anyway, but difficult to answer, if we do not want to dive into the depths of psychological speculations. But there are some starting points which may help the viewer to understand the work of an artist a little bit better.For example with Genter Limburg, born in Kall in 1960 and there grown up, a small Eifel town, which one probably hardly brings in connection with forming art. There in school it was his art teacher Gyoergy Asvany, who woke the feeling in his pupil that drawing and painting can help to express feelings, can help to arrange thoughts, too. The idea to become a painter, to study art settled within the young man - and still as a pupil he applied to the professional school for fine art and design in Cologne. There it was the Czech Pravoslav Sovak, who took Limburg under his wings. This professor of fine arts, who demanded mental, social and political argumentation from his students as much as the refinement of their graphical skills. Fantasy and creativity is the one side of the art. The other one focused well-planned work. In so-called "monthly projects" Limburg searched systematically for the answers to questions he posed himself, for the challenge in unknown areas. Forced himself to confront with new materials, investigates the possibilities of the Linoleum Cuts, limited himself the use of colours, tested " the third dimension by doing sculptureAnd proceeding in fine art is - as many artists forget today - hard work. Why does Limburg paint in such a way, that his pictures, with their expressive forms remind the viewer to those of the German expressionists? Perhaps it is also the similar political and sociological environment, which leads to comparably results. The artist himself gives us a simple answer, too. Limburg: "I had to visit church each Sunday in my childhood - overlaid with the threatening idea, God Father sees everything. That was really quite scaring to me. But the wonderful coloured Church windows with their black framed forms were literally my way out." The usually black lines of the black frames do not appear completely surprisingly in his works. Spontaneously and fast Limburg begins to paint on his canvas with the brush, the oil pastels or the charcoal, creating wild lines which seem to develop to forms all by themselves. Only gradually the motive, history emerges. Differently is his treatment of the individual surfaces: Sometimes "smoothly", strongly and monotonously, sometimes softly modulated and with tender structures. Broken and pure colours support themselves to the stirring up contents. Abstraction represents the emotional elements and helps to bring it word by word into a controlled and controllable form. He paints still lives, in order to relax also landscapes. Above all however he paints humans. The tension between harmony and dissonance, underlines the ambivalence of interhuman relationship. The act of painting participates - closely connected with the formal argument - the attempt, to understand the background of the painted histories. There are not simple solutions thereby. Limburg paints stories, which tell of torn individuals, of strong emotions, betrayed love, disappointed dreams, but also lots of hopes. Stories, which pose the questions about faith, death and ethics. What is permitted? What isn't permitted? Limburg allows the viewer to participate in this act of his own self-finding. Juergen Schoen, Cologne, April 1997Each work is, as it grows, an absolutely open development. It develops within different areas of tension, with regard to content as well as technique. Until its completion, each work runs through different phases, in which its contents and structures develop with one another.The reflection of visually recognizable contents of life, as for example the human figures appearing in the foreground, together with the invisible realities of mental feelings, is combined into a complete whole. In this entity, the different elements, figurative or abstract, possess the same artistic importance. In analogy to daily life, where some connections and relationships may appear clearly recognizable, others remain less or hardly perceptable, the work contains a similar spectrum of perception.
Exhibitions (selection):1994: Galerie Ruchti, Modern Art, Cologne; Projet Est/Ouest, Avon / F; Christus Kirche, Homburg v. d. Hoehe (with works of Ludwig Meidner);Charly Martin Kunsthandel, Sonsbeck (with Antonius Hoeckelmann)1995: BBG Villa Horten, Duisburg; Projet Est/Ouest, Dresden; Harzburger Hof, Bad Harzburg( with A. R. Penck ); Charly Martin Kunsthandel, Sonsbeck (with Joerg Immendorff and Corrado Simeoni); 1996: Kunsthalle Kubus, Duisburg; Kunststation Ruchti, Bonn; Jesuitenkonvikt, A. R. PenckHeimbach;Portraits of Charly, Stadthaus Rheinberg(with. A.R. Penck, Markus Luepertz and Joerg Immendorff);1997: Leopold-Hoesch-Museum, Dueren, Schloss Burgau; Kreuzau;Kunststation Ruchti, Bonn;(with H.A. Schult und Karl Heidelbach);1998: Kunsthalle Kubus, Duisburg;Kunstverein K.I.S. Sonsbeck; Galerie Groenfeld, Mechernich;1999: Forum art interregio, Satzvey; Galerie Villa Cotto, Moers-Kapellen;Galerie Basse, Leer; Charly Martin Kunsthandel, Sonsbeck;2000: Galerie on Tour , Moers, Gabriele Hering; L-age d-or, Bonn; Stadthaus, Rheinberg; Galerie Villa Cotto, Moers-Kapellen; Galerie DB 3, Cologne;2001: Galerie im Haus,Hamburg2002: Galerie Basse, Leer;Art Fabrik, Hamburg;Galerie Villa Cotto, Moers-Kapellen;2003: Art Fabrik, Hamburg;Galerie Basse, Hamburg;Charly Martin Kunsthandel, Sonsbeck;2004: Altonale 6, Hamburg;2005: Impulse International, Osnabrueck; Galerie Villa Cotto, Moers-Kapellen;Altonale 7, Hamburg;2007:Kunstverein Hoehen Art, Simonskall;Galerie Basse, Hamburg;,
2008: Galerie Artmis, Poznan (Poland), Städtische Galerie Iserlohn, 2010: Galerie R. Schäfer, Poznan (Poland), Somewhere in the nowhere, art souterrain, Köln, 2011: art souterrain, Köln, 2012: Alte Limonadenfabrik, Köln, art souterrain, Köln
Future Shows: Exhibition Guenter Limburg -Traces-Sept.1st until Oct.28thKunstverein Hoehen Art, HuertgenwaldSimonskall is a very special place in the Rureifel. Not only concerning the history of the dreadful fight between Americans and Germans around the "Kalltrail" in the Huertgenwald, during the Second World War, in which within five months more GI's died, than in the entire Viet Nam war. Already during the twenties lived and worked here, in the house of a writer named Carl Jatho, a group of artists, who obtained and kept from the Eifel a constant connection to the city of cologne, which happens to be some fifty kilometres away from there.Both artistically, by their participation in the community of the "Cologne progressives" among those for example also Max Ernst and Otto Dix ranked themselves, and politically, by the publication of an anarchistic-communistic shaped magazine -Der Ziegelbrenner- (the brick burner), which was printed in Simonskall and distributed from there. Publisher of this magazine was the later world famous writer B.Traven (Death Ship and many more). Those meanwhile to large attention arrived painters were Franz Wilhelm Seiwert, Heinrich Hoerle and Otto Freundlich. The tradition of the artistic connection between the Huertgenwald and Cologne is to be taken up with the exhibition "traces" by Guenter Limburg in the art association Hoehen Art again. Limburg, has grown up in the proximity of Simonskall and is living and working in Cologne meanwhile, is to work additionally locally in Simonskall in a new studio and will help to get the connections become alive again.