Page 20 - Studio International - August 1965
P. 20

Montage with natural objects 1964

                                                                                 Collage w,th paint 1 964 54 x 45 cm.
       Resin on canvas 1964    chance.  of  success;  'he  gropes  his  way  forward  by
                               success·.  as  Arnold  Gehlen.  the  noted  sociologist.
                               describes  it  in  his  book  Zeit-Bilder  (1962).  Results
                               alone count.
                                That with  Dahmen they are capable of fascinating us
                               as they do is due certainly not least to the fact that he is

                              neither a fellow-traveller nor a man to make capital out  his  work.  For  the  artist  has  always  striven  to  wrest
                              of a trend. but is far rather a discoverer and co-founder  from the casual. the compact. firmly articulated. some­
                              of this school of painting. Among his spiritual kinsmen  times severe form.  His early pictures show this and his
                              in  many  lands  must  be  numbered  Tapies.  Burri.   latest  work  confirms  it.  A  strangely  weathered,
                              Dubuffet.  Wagemaker.  Bernard  Schultze.  Gerhard  incrusted  beauty  animates  his  creations.  a  highly
                              Hoehme and Emil Schumacher. They all.  almost at the  developed aesthetic sense that is opposed to everything
                              same  time  and  partly  independently  of  each  other.  brutal.  Dahmen lives to paint and he paints to live.  He
                              found new  possibilities  of  'informal'  creation  in  terms  creates  out  of  fullness.  Although  during  the  last  ten
                              of  colour and  material.  of  painting  pictures  the  sense  years  he  has  found  a  style  that  is  unmistakably  his
                              and aesthetic effect of which depend primarily on the  own. he practically never repeats himself.  Each picture
                              process  of  ·making·.  Their  different  techniques  have  is a new  discovery,  a  new creation.  It is a joy to visit
                              opened  up  new  pictorial  ground  and  widened  our  his  spacious  workshop  and  to  study  the  pictures  in
                              understanding of the abstract forms in  Nature.    statu  nascendi.  The spirit of the medieval  craftsman is
                               Unlike the majority of  his like-minded  co-innovators  combined  with  the  methods  of  the  modern  experi­
                              Dahmen  bypassed  the  phase  of  Tachism.  Movement  menter.  Seeking and finding become one.
                              and  spontaneity  have  never  been  his  aim.  At bottom   Dahmen  is  not less well known  abroad than  here in
                              even  the  concept  of  "informel'  is  hardly  applicable  to   Germany.  He has already had more than forty one-man
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