Peter Freeman, Inc. is pleased to present Ernst Caramelle: actual size, the artist’s fourth solo exhibition with the
gallery and his second at this New York location.
Austrian conceptualist Caramelle regularly engages wall painting, drawing, photography, video, publishing, and
interventions with architecture. This exhibition features a generous selection of his works on paper and board
spanning decades, alongside publications and a video. Regardless of his choice of materials, Caramelle’s concerns
remain consistent: production, or keeping things going; reproduction, or transforming things through duplicating
and publishing; and perception, or finding the most improbable things through direct observation.
Formally trained as a glass painter, Caramelle’s work across all media is characterized by a lightness of touch and
humorous play with scale, flatness, and depth. Whether it is in the speediness of a wine spill forming a landscape or
the slow burn of the sun blanching the colors of construction papers, he guides his forms into focus. Given his
openness to processes that are only moderately controllable, the studio is a constant and crucial space for keeping
transformations manageable and ongoing. As a site for daily routine, with the day-to-day doodles, the focused
planning, small accidents, and sudden miracles accumulating, even his studio table tops become works.
The proposition in the title, actual size, allows Caramelle’s use of marginalia and framing devices as tools to open
an elastic relationship between abstraction and illusion—after all, how can a thing be anything but its own actual
size? This is a gesture reaching across decades to previous Caramelle projects. For example two publications from
1990, the catalogue Panorama der Retrospektiven (Rainer Verlag) and the artist’s book Grandeur nature (Musée
d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris), each feature basic geometric forms paired with labels to identify them as
precise objects or spaces, playing the actual size of the images off the imagined scale of their identifications.
Ernst Caramelle sets in motion a steady approach to making and observing. Even when keeping things to their
actual size, the artist’s oeuvre is an ode to the process: shifting perception and form by keeping open to changes of
Ernst Caramelle (b. 1952, Tyrol, Austria) lives and works in Frankfurt and New York. Notable solo exhibitions
include Museum moderner Kunst Siftung Ludwig, Vienna (2018); Bonnefanten Museum, Maastricht (2016); La
Salle de Bains, Lyon (2014); Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus (2012); Bloomberg Space, London (2010);
Galerie im Taxispalais, Innsbruck, Austria (2008); Museu Fundação Serralves, Porto, Portugal (2005); the
National Gallery, Berlin (1990); the Kunsthalle Bern (1986); Portikus, Frankfurt; and Wiener Secession, Vienna
(1993). Group exhibitions include the Kunstmuseum Stuttgart (2020); MIT List Art Center, Cambridge (2018);
Städtische Galerie, Karlsruhe (2015); South London Gallery (2010); Sammlung Generali Foundation, Vienna
(2005); Documenta IX, Kassel (1992); and Musée d’Arte Moderne de la Ville de Paris (1990).
A reception with the artist will be held on Thursday, 20 April, 6-8pm. Caramelle will give a talk and walkthrough
of the exhibition on Saturday, 22 April at 4:30pm.