Marcus Jansen – New Horizons
10 February – 15 April 2018
Opening: Friday 9 February, 7:00 p.m.

After numerous exhibits in German galleries and art spaces, the painter Marcus Jansen – who was born in New York and has long been famous in the USA – now presents his work for the first time in a one-man show at a German museum. An extensive selection of his oil paintings on canvas and paper will be shown under the title “Marcus Jansen | New Horizons. Mit den Waffen der Malerei” in Bastion Kronprinz at the Citadel in Berlin from February 10 through April 15.

Marcus Jansen is regarded as the inventor and pioneer of Modern Urban Expressionism. Dr. Manfred Schneckenburger, the director of documenta in 1977 and 1987, recently commended him as “one of the most important American painters of his generation.” Jansen himself describes his painting as a type of warfare: “Painting is the most intimate act of war.”

Raised bilingually by his German father and his West Indian mother, Marcus Jansen went to school in Germany. He was active on the graffiti scene in Germany in the 1980s and afterwards in New York, where he met WEST ONE and referenced Jean-Michel Basquiat. In the late 1990s, Jansen developed his unmistakable Neoexpressionist “Crossover” style, which harks back to German Expressionism and alludes to Robert Rauschenberg’s “Combine Paintings.”

Jansen’s artworks portray a world that has come unhinged. Fragments of landscapes, ruined buildings and isolated figures contrast with an abstract background of coarse brushstrokes. In his frequently large-format paintings, Jansen transforms the traumata of the Iraq War, in which he participated as GI, and takes a critical stance toward the conflicts of our era. It remains unclear whether new horizons will open up in these post-apocalyptic scenarios.


Panel discussion on the occasion of the exhibition
“MARCUS JANSEN | NEW HORIZONS. Mit den Waffen der Malerei”  February 11, 2018, 12:00 a.m.
Remises of Bastion Kronprinz

Evidently shaken to its intellectual and moral foundations, where is America headed? Through his artistic means, Marcus Jansen lays bare the destruction of environment and civilization in his country and brought about by his country. But are the isolated figures in his painted apocalyptic landscapes, especially the younger figures, perhaps choosing a different path – one which could lead toward new horizons?

Marcus Jansen, Artist
Brooke Lynn McGowan PhD, Curator and Publicist, New York
Lawrence Voytek, Former Producer of Robert Rauschenberg
Prof. Dr. Manfred Schneckenburger, Curator and Publicist, Cologne
Dr. Birgit Löffler, Director DASMAXIMUM, Traunreut
Rasmus Kleine, Director Kallmann-Museum, Ismaning

Moderators: Dr. Elmar Zorn & Cordula Gielen, Curatorial Partners

Creeping Obstacles in Kansas, 2010, Öl, Emailfarbe, Mischtechnik und Collage auf Leinwand