D / E


Broom Hollow
Eric Keller – Painting

8 September – 28 October 2023, Opening: 7 September, 6-9 p.m.

Eric Keller’s paintings have a magnetic appeal, even though – or perhaps because – their subjects are anything but spectacular. From casual glimpses of waterside paths, sports fields and car parks, railway crossings, sheds or industrial buildings, and interiors of abandoned GDR cultural buildings, the artist composes a unique visual cosmos. In this focused interplay with memory, landscapes and architectures mostly remain deserted. On the rare occasions when one or two young individuals appear, they seem introspective and appear to be waiting for something.

With “Broom Hollow”, the Galerie Poll presents its fourth solo exhibition of the Dresden- and Berlin-based painter. The title does not refer to a specific landscape but goes back to ancient street names that have survived on the outskirts of the city – a faded relic, similar to the prop wall left on a stage in the painting of the same name or the faded mural in “Kulturhaus 7”.

The motifs are composed of large areas of colour, built up tone on tone from thin layers of oil glaze in various shades of grey, blue, violet, or ochre. The painter’s technique of overpainting, and of removing paint, means that a work goes through many states before Keller declares it to be finished. The slight blurring he applies to his motifs creates evocative spaces of memory.

Whatever Eric Keller paints, he once saw – and stored in his subconscious. Working on the painting, he returns in his imagination to scenes he observed, recalls situations he has fleetingly experienced. Their exact location remains his secret. Even geographical information in the title, such as “Street near Gorbitz”, lead only into the unknown.

“But it is precisely this strange mood, hard to put into words, this aura somewhere between the banality of everyday life and unreal magic, that makes Eric Keller’s paintings so alluring. Many of them seem like frozen stills from a melancholic road movie,” is how art historian and art critic Sebastian Preuss characterises the works.

Eric Keller was born in Grimma in 1985. He studied fine arts at the Academy of Fine Arts (Akademie der Bildenden Künste) in Nuremberg with Prof. Rolf-Gunter Dienst from 2006 to 2008 and painting at the Academy of Fine Arts (Hochschule für Bildende Künste) in Dresden from 2008 to 2014 with Prof. Elke Hopfe and Prof. Ralf Kerbach. From 2016 to 2018 he was a master student at the Leipzig Academy of Fine Arts (HGB Leipzig) with Prof. Annette Schröter. Eric Keller lives and works in Dresden and Berlin. His works are held in numerous private and institutional collections, including the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, the Städtische Galerie Dresden, and the Collection of Contemporary Art of the Federal Republic of Germany in Bonn.