Dominik Schmitt’s work centers around, in the same methodology as his thoughts, the creation of a singular experience from a host of hundreds.
The CAMP Gallery is pleased to announce a solo exhibition, A Grafted Mind, featuring the works of Dominik Schmitt. The exhibition is available for viewing in our North Miami location at 791 NE 125th St. from June 10th - July 8th.
The realization that your mind is not your own, but rather the forced amalgamation of your body bearing witness of the world revolving, is a hard pill to swallow for most. Our perception of the real word is a firing of synapses that transmit what our bodies interpret into the thoughts we perceive. This reality is beyond our own control, to the point where even our memories become complacent of the fused past we experience, even indirectly. The misremembering and false thoughts our mind conjures reacts on the same level as the aspects of others lives we can relive as though they are our own. A Grafted Mind is a realized portrayal of the facets that the stitched-together thoughts and memories form by German artist Dominik Schmitt. An acceptance of all thoughts, positive or negative, allows for the conjuration of visages that Schmitt portrays in his collage paintings, the visual recollection becoming equally as composited as the thoughts being retold.
Dominik Schmitt’s work centers around, in the same methodology as his thoughts, the creation of a singular experience from a host of hundreds. Naturally, under the same process, his grafting is a positive technique, reinforcing the host to create subsections in which something new may be made by its scions. Yet the reflections and influences that Schmitt takes upon his work functions as studies, analyses, and breakdowns of past, present, and future revelations that the artist would be exposed to.
The artist transforms into something akin to a surgeon, cutting away the extraneous portions of formed opinion in realization of a singular, new form. The use of prior experiences within his work breaks down artistic theory through an invoking of chiaroscuro technique within the darkness of his pieces and upon the apt shading of his figures. The dissection of histories and methods in simple creation allow Schmitt to transmute into the titular character of Rembrandt’s 1632 painting, The Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Nicolaes Tulp, as his surgical approach of memory insertion gives meaning to the scattered letters and anecdotes in the work as identification of ideas. In works such as “she” | “she” and its accompanying sister works, the expressive nature of his fusion between the pastel tones and the monochrome figure is most evident, as darkness has subsided everywhere except for within the subject, and the layered nature of his style develop the amalgamated thoughts in a mingling of paint and collage clippings, which Schmitt sources from a variety of print media including magazines and newspapers.
In the evolution of Schmitt’s work, the influences of pervasive thoughts surrounding his life inform the sometimes grotesque figurature that occupy his compositions. Be they reflections of his current environment, in the way Donald Dumb clearly evokes his visceral response to American politics, or a breakdown of a single form in eliptical works such as To Poke Around and Smiley, his insticual reactions construct the newly autonomous intentions of the work. The grafting of such varied thoughts and experiences together create a new memory, unique from all the individual elements that form it; separated from all implications, neutral to itself and all its surroundings. Schmitt’s Frankenstein-esque memory becomes an inheritance of the real and unreal progression leading to it, now free to chart its own history.
The end realization of the artists’ involved dissection of their own inner machinations is that a single mind is much more than when taken at face value, as it surpasses an individual’s will and becomes a collective in its own right. The harboring of ideas, thoughts, and history all form an assemblage that reflects the person they were for that moment, as a nano-second can make all the difference. Dominik Schmitt’s work in A Grafted Mind is the metamorphosis of the newly formed mass into a defined new subject. Where once was many, is now one, whole in the fact that its pieces preconceive themselves as an individual.