Van Ham Art Estate presents "Karl Fred Dahmen - Works on paper"

Karl Fred Dahmen was both an important painter of the German Informel and an outstanding graphic artist with his own workshop. In this catalogue you will find an interesting range of Karl Fred Dahmen's works on paper. The carefully curated selection of drawings and prints spans an arc from his informally oriented early work with abstract pieces to his monochrome furrowed pictures of the 1970s. Essentially, he used the printmaking techniques of etching, screen printing and lithography.

Since 2013, VAN HAM Art Estate has managed the artistic and written estate of the German artist. For more information on the VAN HAM Art Estate, please visit the official Homepage. The catalogue of his œuvre can be purchased at the VAN HAM Art Store.

The painter and graphic artist Karl Fred Dahmen (Stolberg 1917 - Chiemgau 1981) is considered an important representative of German Informel. In the course of the 1960s and 1970s, he developed into a conceptual object artist who moved from the industrial Rhineland to rural Chiemgau. As a professor in Munich, he influenced generations of artists (including Günther Förg) in a similar way to Joseph Beuys in Düsseldorf.

His early work includes expressive-abstract paintings with a tectonic structure alongside tachist-oriented pictures. The dark-toned and relief-like paintings and material collages recall the damage to the local landscape in Stolberg caused by surface mining. In printmaking, Dahmen initially worked with the traditional printing process of lithography and the contemporary new medium of screen printing. His first lithographs and screen prints were published by Edition Schießl in Freiburg and Edition Rothe in Heidelberg.

From the mid-1960s onwards, Dahmen increasingly integrated objects into his paintings, which were designed as "object boxes". By the use of everyday objects or utilitarian tools of animal husbandry, Dahmen seeks to reconnect art with life. In printmaking, Dahmen intensified his work with etching, whose etching processes offered ideal structural possibilities. In 1968 Dahmen was appointed professor at the Munich Academy. In the workshop of his converted farmhouse in Chiemgau he set up an etching press and expanded the technical and artistic spectrum of his etchings and embossed prints. He combines relief, intaglio and embossed printing processes and achieves a complexity reminiscent of his object boxes. His drawings and his prints develop into an independent means of expression.

His late "Furchenbilder" (furrowed pictures) on the one hand reflect his travel experience through the USA, primarily California, and on the other hand they refer to the confrontation with his own existence, which goes hand in hand with the reduction of artistic means. The drawings by Karl Fred Dahmen correspond with these "Furchenbilder".

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For more information on the artist, please visit Karl Fred Dahmen's official homepage:

 Karl Fred Dahmen

Coverbild: Karl Fred Dahmen and his printer Josef Werner | Copyright: Hanne Gerthe

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