Susanne Themlitz

Learn about the artist's universe through a text accompanied by a selection of works from the exhibition “All I want – Portuguese women artists from 1900 to 2020”

By Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation

Text by Lígia Afonso / Plano Nacional das Artes

From the series “The Vertebral and the Invertebrate II” (2007) by Susanne ThemlitzOriginal Source: Collection Pedro Bini Antunes

Susanne Themlitz combines sculpture, installation, painting, drawing and video to create a personal language, a unique set of images and a personal microcosm.

From the series “The Vertebral and the Invertebrate II” (2007) by Susanne ThemlitzOriginal Source: Collection Pedro Bini Antunes

From the series “The Vertebral and the Invertebrate II”, 2007
Silicone, boots and concrete
37 x 31 cm
Collection Pedro Bini Antunes 

From the series “Extroversion" (2006) by Susanne ThemlitzOriginal Source: Courtesy Galeria Vera Cortês

From the series “Extroversion", 2006
Terracota, acrylic paint on chipboard, wooden table
78 x 52 x 30 cm
Courtesy Galeria Vera Cortês

Silence 1, from the series "Silence; 5 elements in bronze and aluminium" (2010) by Susanne ThemlitzOriginal Source: Collection Projeto Travessa da Ermida

She explores the sensorial plasticity of raw materials as varied as clay, wood, bronze, fibreglass, cement, clothes, shoes, funnels, aluminium tubes and plastic buckets, paying particular attention to textures, surfaces, cracks and colours to deeply engage the senses. 

From the series “The Vertebral and the Invertebrate II” (2007) by Susanne ThemlitzOriginal Source: Collection Norlinda and José Lima on loan to Centro de Arte Oliva

These materials are used to stage organic landscapes, precarious habitats or unusual figurations that highlight the ambiguity of the relationships between the natural, the human and the animal, and that evoke the emotional experience of dream and childhood narratives, flowing freely between the real, the imagined and the symbolic.

From the series “The Vertebral and the Invertebrate II” (2007) by Susanne ThemlitzOriginal Source: Collection Norlinda and José Lima on loan to Centro de Arte Oliva

From the series “The Vertebral and the Invertebrate II”, 2007
Bronze, resin, polyurethane, wood, cotton and paint
Sculptures: 81 x 31 x 21 cm; 13 x 23 x 10 cm; 4,5 x 13,5 x 13 cm
Base: 80,4 x 48,4 x 48,2 cm
Collection Norlinda and José Lima on loan to Centro de Arte Oliva, inv. NAO-000757

Silence 1, from the series "Silence; 5 elements in bronze and aluminium" (2010) by Susanne ThemlitzOriginal Source: Collection Projeto Travessa da Ermida

Silence 1, from the series "Silence; 5 elements in bronze and aluminium", 2010
Bronze and aluminium
35 x 40 x 45 cm
Collection Projecto Travessa da Ermida

Uno y uno y uno (2018) by Susanne ThemlitzOriginal Source: Collection S & A

Uno y uno y uno, 2018
Glazed ceramics
27 x 24 cm
Collection S & A

From the series "At Eye Level" (2008) by Susanne ThemlitzOriginal Source: Courtesy Galeria Vera Cortês

Her works propose alternative realities, geographies and atmospheres, each deeply inventive and subjective. Their settings, inhabitants and constituent elements seem vaguely recognisable, connecting to a primordial or subconscious state.

From the series "At Eye Level" (2008) by Susanne ThemlitzOriginal Source: Courtesy Galeria Vera Cortês

Belonging to a species foreshadowed in mythology, literature and bedtime stories, hybrid, mutant, legendary, disquieting, fantastic, grotesque, metamorphic, tragic and scornful creatures feed the identitarian questioning of the work as the artist's alter ego or as the representation of a surrealist, complex, and enigmatic humanity.

From the series "At Eye Level" (2008) by Susanne ThemlitzOriginal Source: Courtesy Galeria Vera Cortês

From the series "At Eye Level", 2008
Terracota, ceramic and plywood
58 x 36 x 35 cm
Courtesy Galeria Vera Cortês

“From the State of the Intertravelled" (2006) by Susanne ThemlitzOriginal Source: Courtesy Galeria Vera Cortês

From the State of the Intertravelled, 2006
Backpack, strings, shoes, clothes, collage on artificial fur, cotton bag, baked clay, hooks
150 x 45 x 40 cm
Courtesy Galeria Vera Cortês 

Credits: Story

Selection of works presented at the exhibition All I want: Portuguese women artists from 1900 to 2020, in its first moment at Calouste Gulbenkian Museum, Lisbon, within the scope of the cultural program that takes place in parallel to the Portuguese Presidency of the Council of the European Union 2021.

Exhibition organized by the Portuguese Ministry of Culture, Directorate-General for Cultural Heritage (DGPC) and the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, in co-production with the Center of Contemporary Creation Olivier Debré, Tours, and with the collaboration of the Plano Nacional das Artes (Portugal).

Curators:
Helena de Freitas and Bruno Marchand


Text by Lígia Afonso / Plano Nacional das Artes
Selection of online resources Maria de Brito Matias


Learn more about Susanne Themlitz's works presented in the context of this exhibition:
All I want: Starting Point
All I want: The Space of Writing
All I want: Construction
All I want: Le Vivant
All I want: The House
All I want: The Political

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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