Anton Henning stirs me in a way that is rare during my art viewing sessions. He has an all-encompassing oeuvre that mingles paintings (portrait, landscape, still lifes abstracted), sculptures, and photographs into installations that all gather to become one work. He paints and blends the wall that keeps the painting hanging, he builds paintings to create a four sided free standing sculpture, he attaches overhead lighting to illuminate individual paintings, and turns a light box gelatin monochrome into a couch. He’s an eccentric if there ever was one and although his show at Zach Feuer doesn’t reveal this 360 vision of his crazy self it exemplifies his interests in subtly critiquing the way we view and comprehend art and its environment.
Color and movement are key elements in his paintings, they move in out side to side, meander, loop, cross, overlap, and dissect. The rich, thick, opaque heartful palette are Fauvist, Impressionist, Abstract Expressionist. The strokes vary from unending line, short terse dabs, dotted, repetitive, and present. My eyes are not satisfied and want to absorb and digest the painting, I want to enter and indulge in its free flowing abstracted representation of reality. And he allows you to do so in some of his installations. I take Anton Henning’s work very personally, and I think they talk to me in a lover’s whisper, beckoning me to come hither, enter a world of freedom and floating, an alternate reality, or an actualized reality that reveals the abstracted, incomprehensible, indeterminate qualities that confuse and disenchant us more often than not.