The biting and curious glance over metropolitan reality in Volker Klein’s artworks (IE)


The evolution and discomforts of the contemporary world are very often protagonists of the production of many artists who, through the act of painting, represent and express what revolves around them, each one through their own personal language that sometimes needs to shout, sometimes to whisper, everything that presses to get out. Today’s protagonist artist has a unique approach to reality.

Street Art has always set the goal of telling, through decidedly lively and over-the-top tones, what was happening in contemporary society at the time when the artist expressed and is stil expressing; in many cases art has been used as a social and political denunciation, in others as a manifestation of profound inner uneasiness, and it has done it in public places, on the walls, in order to be visible to all the people and to arrive clearly and unequivocally at whoever looked at them. Many street artists have gone from public messages to canvases that have allowed them to have access to art galleries: Jean Michel Basquiat with his anger as a street boy, Keith Haring with his mysterious and impersonal men who emphasized the tendency to homologate society in the eighties, and last but not least the phenomenon Banksy with his fast raids on the city walls but also author of beautiful works on canvas in which he does not give up his desecratory and ironic style, are just few examples of how the message born in the street has then fascinated collectors and fans. Volker Klein, German by birth but Roman by adoption, chooses a style halfway between Graffito and Materico to tell a reality observed with a curious gaze, without complaint, without judgment, only with the desire to immortalize fragments of real sensations received wandering the streets of the cities. His vision is sometimes dreamy, sometimes ironic, sometimes surprised by the mixing of different realities that, like at a crossroads, are at the same time in the same place and, magically sometimes even without realizing it, come together. Klein is able to grasp those differences, those apparently random contaminations that the fragment of time afterwards probably dissolve, and chooses to tell stories of a moment that strike his eye, through his open-minded approach that allows him to see beyond what would otherwise remain on the surface of the first quick glance.

La donna di mezzogiorno
1 Twelve o’clock woman

The colours are often lively, as in the artwork La donna di mezzogiorno (Twelve o’clock woman), chosen to highlight the leading figures of those encounters ‘by chance’ that occur continuously in contemporary cities, figures that are described through the clean line of the drawing, sometimes cut from newspapers and magazines or from photographs, to compose that collage image, material and absolutely alive, which is the main feature of Volker Klein’s works.

La ragazza strabica
2 The cross eyed girl

In the artwork La ragazza strabica (The cross-eyed girl) what emerges is the chaos of everyday life, experienced and perceived by the artist as a status of modern society, not as a negative sensation or discomfort, indeed, it seems to tell all the positive that comes from a versatility, from an enrichment resulting from the differences that are undeniably visible every day.

Due personaggi in paesaggio astratto
3 Two characters in abstract landscape
4 The rim

The acknowledgement of present reality, the pursuit to beauty and generalized vanity, Due personaggi in paesaggio astratto (Two characters in abstract landscape) and L’orlo (The Rim) are two clear examples, up to the infinite options of consumerism that confuse and disorient, are themes treated with delicacy, with irony but also with the depth that is achieved only when you use lightness, which has nothing to do with superficiality, as a means of expression, it is a language that comes more immediate and direct to the viewer.

Un motivo greco attraversa il mio quadro
5 A greek pattern crossing my painting

The work Un motivo greco attraversa il mio quadro (A Greek pattern crossing my painting), on the other hand, underlines the mixture of cultures that accompanies contemporary living, cultures that sometimes have difficulty in dialoguing with each other even though they are aware that they coexist side by side, as if in some way Klein wanted to put the accent on the resistance that is often seen in a daily life in which the other is looked at with distrust rather than being welcomed.

Wishful painful
6 Wishful painful

Volker Klein allows himself also to reflect over less positive states of mind, as in Wishful Painful, a work in which emerges a pessimism generated by the mass media, the messages that daily bomb today’s man and detach him from contact with the simple and serene reality that everyone has the right to live; or, with another key of interpretation, it can be the fear of the future to generate pain, that unpredictable that too often you tend to see as frightening, precisely because unknown, and capable of generating anxiety and anguish for this. An artist since time immemorial, his first solo exhibition dates back to 1968 in Mannheim, during his long career he has participated in many collective exhibitions in important institutional places, such as the Macro and the Palazzo delle Esposizioni in Rome, as well as many personal exhibitions in Italy and abroad.

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