12th Feb – 13th Mar 2021
From Feb 12 to Mar 13, 2021, Galerie Thomas Fuchs holds its first solo exhibition titled "Dark Loveboat Stories" of Berlin-based artist Moritz Schleime ( *1978 ).
Moritz Schleime describes the works in the exhibition. In individual episodes, his paintings tell stories of death, emptiness and loneliness, but also of hope and love. Set in a maritime environment, captains, skeletons, young girls and hairy monsters meet somewhere between life and death, movement and stillness, intoxication and sobriety. Moritz Schleime draws on pop culture symbolism in his works: captains wear supermarket vests, skeletons drink martinis, and little circus monkeys juggle on the heads of Instagram models. His paintings always allow us to discover something new, but also remain a bit unfathomable.
In some cases, Moritz Schleime's works are inspired by personal experiences. For example, the work "Slow Explosion" captures the mood of the summer after the first lockdown. A young woman lies on a red Cadillac with flat tires and blows bubble gum. The car is covered with the words "RUN", but escaping the situation is no longer possible. Surrendering to her ironic situation, the young woman dozes surrounded by half-empty wine bottles, a radio, and curious looking monsters in the shade of the trees, where she has no choice but to wait. The view of the world with which Moritz Schleime confronts us is familiar, but at the same time appears too absurd to be true.
Soon it becomes apparent that the stories Moritz Schleime tells have little to do with the cheerfulness of the TV series "Love Boat" from the 1980s, on which the title of the exhibition is based. But as the artist himself remarks, "With all the tragedy in life, there needs to be hope." Thus, the chain-smoking "Love Boat Captain" more reminiscent of a nightmare captain, grins somberly at us, while in "Behind You Love" the pair of figures in a rudderless boat drift aimlessly in the greenish waters. Together and yet alone. The artist responds to the rather morbid themes in his works with a fair amount of humor and irony. In the work "Klappern" a pair of lovers, consisting of two skeletons, rush in a full moon night on a raft with a hoisted heart flag over the sea, where they love each other in the "afterlife". The skeletons in the works of Moritz Schleime act as a memento mori, i.e. a reminder of the transience of life, sometimes appearing as the protagonist and sometimes only in passing. For the artist himself, death is also not simultaneously an end, because as he himself puts it, "[...] perhaps after death also comes a birth again." Thus, the works in this exhibition become metaphors of hope and remind us that at the end of the journey a safe haven awaits us.
Moritz Schleime was born in 1978 in Köpenick, former East Berlin, and relocated to Kreuzberg, West Berlin, in 1984. Today he lives and works in Berlin. Moritz Schleime will be featured in a solo exhibition called Auf hoher See at the Fritz-und-Hildegard-Ruoff-Stiftung from March 21 to May 16, 2021. Previous group exhibitions include Jetzt! Junge Malerei in Deutschland, Deichtorhallen Hamburg, Kunstmuseum Bonn, Museum Wiesbaden, Kunstsammlungen Chemnitz, DE, 2019/2020; Moving Energies- 10 years me Collectors Room, Me Collectors Room, Berlin, DE, 2020; Marc Jung and the Gang, Kunsthalle Erfurt, DE, 2019; Mother and Sun (mit Cornelia Schleime), Rosenhang Museum, Weilburg, DE, 2018. Moritz Schleime is represented in collections including:: Ole Faarup Collection, Copenhagen, DK; Steffen Hildebrand Sammlung, Leipzig, DE; Olbricht Collection, Essen/Berlin, DE; Sammlung Philara, Düsseldorf, DE.