As we’ve mentioned extensively over the past few months here on our WordPress, one of the biggest events that we’ve been involved within in recent months is the opening of the downstairs exhibition space dedicated to Hartwig’s creative process, so we fired the artist in question himself some questions about his experience of the private opening and his thoughts on the space itself.
First of all, how was the opening?
I remember it as a very nice evening because there was a constant flow of people and it was never empty. As soon as the first people started coming in there was always someone new and there were even people who then said well now… they had the feeling that they had to even vacate downstairs to let more people in! I noticed how many people there were, but of course because I was constantly engaged with conversations and talking to people and answering questions my vision of the night was a little bit blurred.
It was certainly bustling for a good few hours! How was the response for you personally?
It was nice, I mean there wasn’t a huge amount of questions thrown my way because the exhibition itself was designed to answer questions in itself, of course people still did take the opportunity to come over to me during the evening and ask me certain things.
Were there any comments in particular that really stuck with you?
Yes, I think mainly the question which comes up also now that people ask me well… “What do you use?” you know, what media do I use and what research do I do? I’ve even had people ask me if I take a helicopter and go up and view the perspectives I draw myself and fly above London or other places when in-fact I merely just analyse lots of arial photographs, along with viewing London from higher places where possible. Words such as ‘Impressive’ and ‘Mind-Boggling’ which I’m assuming is down to how they’re witnessing the process develop and the different steps in the space is also always nice to hear from people.
People are well aware of its purpose to them but tell us a bit about why you wanted to have this space in the first place? What does it mean to you?
Its just very nice also to really show things, originals, drawings and sketches which until now were hidden away in the studio which were unseen by the public, which is personally something I like to see as a viewer of art myself. Being able to see the stages of the process and the development of something quite rough to refined is something I’m interested to see so being able to show my process in the same light is something I’m very happy and proud of. Every single piece of work isn’t made from perfection its moulded into it in stages.
What is your favourite part of the downstairs space? What are you most proud of?
Well its always difficult to say if you have favourites! All the finished pieces are a bit like children in a way, it’s hard to like one more than the other. However the big framed originals such as the London Looking West due of its sheer size and also as its one of the newer pieces with the most developed style and technique make it a favourite of mine. It’s hard not to view it as the centre-piece of the exhibition and I do feel extremely proud of it now in its framed state and not just on my studio table! Its able to be appreciated in the way it should now and not just stacked together loose.
The drawing-board collage that you see as soon as you come down the stairs is also something I love because I find that It really has something with those super imposed different sketches where you can see the different phases and something really coming to life it makes for impressive viewing to me and is nice to see as a whole piece, its also epitomises everything that we wanted to show downstairs in a single installation.
Whats next for you and your finished pieces? Is there scope for an external show?
I would say two things. we have this space now, so I’m thinking whenever a new major big piece is going to be finished that we can use the space somehow to unveil it in a special way moving forward. Reshuffling the pieces into he show itself is something we also would like to do from time to time but having an external exhibition somewhere in a new space is certainly the current dream wether that be a localised space displaying my latest ‘Greenwich’ image in the spring or maybe even somewhere further into the centre of London showing a variety of finished works and line drawings!