Transitional Stages and Cycles
Existential basic considerations are the focus of Sonja Alhäuser's work. It reveals the drama of life in all its abundance, manifested in lush sensualities, collective festivities all the way to a somber metabolism. In addition to her beautiful large-format, subtly colorized drawings, which can also be read as instructions for action or as recipes, the Berlin-based artist has become known to a wider public for her »Schokoladenmaschinen« (chocolate machines) and margarine sculptures in refrigerated display cases. For her feasts or »6 Bankette ohne Anlass« (6 banquets without cause) she invited diners to a near orgiastic obliteration of her installations, each one dedicated to a specific theme. The exuberant, sensually titillating arrangement of the panel installations with sculptures, hand-painted bunting, crustaceans such as lobsters and crayfish, monster fish or large cuts of venison is intended to not only help spur on culinary enjoyment, but also represents the general contradiction between our constant pursuit of pleasure determining our lives just as much as our continuous desire for self-optimization. Thus, Sonja Alhäuser's art confronts us in a rather disturbing way with the Epicurean worldview before we then stoically return to the drudgery of fitness and body management.