Water is the central element - today, in times of climate change and scarcity of resources, as well as hundreds of years ago in the creation myths of almost all cultures. Water represents life, but also death. Born in 1980 in Memmingen in Bavaria, Germany, the artist draws on the power of water in his paintings. Reminiscences of the ocean and its constant change seem to guide Kirschner. Oil or acrylic paint and canvas are his materials; red and blue his dominant colors; the interplay of figuration and abstraction is his stylistic device.

In his images, he shows depictions of lakes and puddles, surfaces and underworlds, waves and circles, people above the sea and figures below the sea. His works tell of mythologies, legends and sometimes also of a dialogue with the infinite stock of previous works of art. The painting as a space of resonance. In addition to nature, it recreates itself from memory over and over again, elements are mirrored, beings appear and disappear, independent cells circulate below the surface like puffed-up jellyfish, moving in rhythm. Nothing is reliable; casual moments of togetherness dissipate in the fog or are replaced by the flow of colors.

The artist always starts his work by stretching the canvas, with a vague mood in his head, applying diluted paint to the canvas, not everywhere, but layer by layer, until the tonality is right, until he makes placements out of the picture, experiments until images are created by the act of painting itself. Only then does the intellect set in, here, however, very consciously and with the utmost tension, the artist now consults his stock of forms, undertakes reductions and condensations until the scheme-like becomes the real image - the abstract and the figurative determine the resonance space. There are readable images of blurred worlds that seem easily understandable when you look at them, but then an amorphous composition suddenly becomes a creature that ingratiates itself into the underwater world, while troubling and raising questions. In the end, it sharpens our view, which makes further discoveries.

Bernd Kirschner studied painting at the State Academy of Fine Arts in Stuttgart. He received numerous awards for his work. In 2016, he received a visiting professorship in Hangzhou, China. He exhibits in galleries and art spaces in Budapest, Istanbul, New York, Paris, Dresden, Berlin, Beijing and Seoul.