ArtJunk
No. 25—2024

Keep the fire burning

Thomas Wachholz

Info: Thomas Wachholz presents his second solo exhibition Keep the fire burning at Ruttkowski;68 in Cologne. Wachholz’s works are inspired and influenced by the style, form and precision of industrially manufactured everyday objects, explicitly the matchbox. As an object of everyday use, the product cannot be reduced to its function; as a carrier of emotion, it is inscribed with a meaning of individual memory, nostalgic collection and personal reference. With two large size wall paintings, the gallery becomes the canvas itself, the visitors their active creators. Framed by opaque colour fields, the striking surface in the center invites visitors to participate and leave their traces by igniting matchsticks on the surface. The performance creates a dialogue between artist, medium and visitor that allows the artwork to arise in the interaction. In the mundane act of lightning a match, a drawing emerges from the everyday gesture which hereby becomes both, a tool and an object of contemplation. Wachholz’s new bronze works such as The Kiss, refer to the reaction of two matches lit simultaneously. They take up the element of connecting different roles, surfaces and energies throughout the exhibition. It is within this framework, that commonly created art can evolve through the participants activation of the artist’s work.

Ruttkowski;68 Thomas Wachholz ArtJunk