A typical Oldenburg gabled house in a cobbled street. The artist Horst Janssen lived here with his grandparents in the 1930s. “Friends of the Horst Janssen Museum have rented an apartment here – for scholars who are researching Horst Janssen”, explains Inge von Danckelman, president. “What we really want is for Janssen to be placed in a whole new artistic context.”
Aline Helmcke from Leipzig has already placed Janssen’s work in a new context. The 47-year-old drew an animated film based on Janssen’s early work “Dossier Guten Morgen”. In it, Horst Janssen and his girlfriend Verena soar through the sky with heavily doodled designs and a dog also comes to life, all based on Horst Janssen’s style.
Aline Helmcke focuses on Janssen’s early work
The animated film has been presented in the collective exhibition “Janssen Animiert” since October. Aline Helmcke only recently learned that she was the first Horst Janssen Fellow to continue her research: “It is a great pleasure. In connection with the current exhibition ‘Janssen Animiert’, I thought to myself: ‘Oh , what a pity, it’s already over” and I felt like I was just beginning to discover the work of Horst Janssen. Working with the Horst Janssen Museum curatorial team was also fantastic. His collection of graphic works is so vast that I am really delighted to now have the time to come to Oldenburg for nine months and do some research there.”
The artist and scientist is particularly interested in Janssen’s early work. Using old woodcuts and lithographs, she wants to study to what extent the technique influences the content of the works. She also wants to draw series of paintings herself and understand the artist’s technique: “I am always amazed and surprised by the openness with which he turns to all possible techniques and subjects of drawing. It’s amazing that an artist devoted his whole life to drawing. , because we still perceive drawing as a preparation for the actual work, which can then be either sculpture or painting.”
Exhibition or writing following research
The scholarship is intended for young researchers who have already graduated from a university. Fellowship scholars live in the fellow’s apartment for nine months and receive 1,200 euros per month. The result should be a text or an exhibition, explains museum director Jutta Moster-Hoos: “You are very free and have instructions internally. It is also the collection and archive of the Janssen Museum, which serves research base. But the direction in which this is developing is really open to research.”
If the museum director is successful, other fellows will follow. There is still a lot to do, she says: “Janssen has been very, very productive. It is a huge work. There are many written sources on this subject. And Janssen has always gone down in art history with his predecessors, so to speak. , in different phases occupied and meditating on it and all this is reflected in the work.”