Gruppenausstellung Peter Feiler

Thursday, November 5, 2009, 7pm

NOVEMBER 6, 2009 – January 9, 2010



We all struggle with inner contradictions – this also applies to Peter Feiler (1981, Halle an der Saale, Germany). The artist uniquely demonstrates this in his third solo exhibition titled “Gruppenausstellung” (group exhibition). Mostly, his works inhabit the borderline between wit and horror. This time, however, the artist has not constrained himself to only displaying works that focus on his central theme: the abyss of human existence. Peter Feiler captures his critical view of society with sharpness, unwillingness to compromise and the application various techniques onto paper and canvas. In the process, he emphasizes the surreal assembly of specific social topics and the political personalities involved.

The focal point of the exhibition is the 450 x 390 cm paperwork “Das Narrenschiff im Terrorstrom“ (the ship of fools in a torrent of terror), that depicts our society as a doomed ship. Populated by politicians, managers and bankers, it irreversibly rushes up to an abyss. Meanwhile, the scum of the earth transform themselves into a surge of rats that, through a transparent tube, seek salvation in an upward flight and in the favor of the politicians. In parallel, Feiler illustrates the negative, manic aspects of coitus degraded to an industrial product and mans’ transformation into will-less madmen. Teeming with naked bodies, open wounds in repulsive, nevertheless fascinating detail, avarice, lasciviousness, self-harm and the psychotic desire for pain and destruction – a portrait of the human’s soul very darkest side and the chasms of our society.

The crayon, this uncommon medium, adds a pastel colorfulness and an almost childishly innocent patina standing in sharp contrast with the almost pornographic poses of many of his protagonists; thus putting his grotesque figures into perspective. The soft coloring and the filigree execution of the oversized leaves will beguile the beholder into the richness of detail, only then to be confronted with the full brutality that inhabits the darkest side of the human soul.

The epic scale of his narrative style creates a confusing web of different coherences and fragments. Feiler does not offer a preset direction of reading, but forces the beholder to engage with the complexity, the entanglement and the grotesque details of his works.

The special feature of this exhibition is that this entangled web continues in further works, causing multiple suffocation of the beholder. He must find his way between drawings that are rich in detail, bold works made with edding-markers and photorealistic depictions or paintings that initially seem romantic. The plethora of subjects ranges from orgiastic scenes and contemporary events linked to foreign policy, to genre-critical approaches. Where Feiler creates a photorealistic depiction of newspaper clipping concerning Gerhard Richter’s generous, charitable donation of a painting, it cannot simply be interpreted as condemning the 09-11 terrorist-machinations. He also criticizes the highly intellectualized egomania of individual artists.

The work “Optionen” (options) by contrast, at first appeals to the spectator in a curious way, but subsequently compels him to turn away in disbelief. Peter Feiler demonstrates yet another facet of his work when he turns to the painting “Jesus with his disciples“ (1840) by Ferdinand Olivier, an important Nazarene painter, and singles out the image-cut on the right-hand side. By means of this apparently harmless landscape he elicits an almost psychedelic sensation of restriction in the beholder.

As it seems, the actual portrayal of horror is not absolutely necessary to create horror. It’s the feeling of fright and bewilderment they convey, that serves to connect the works of Peter Feiler’s “Gruppenausstellung”.



Peter Feiler

Mankind - Nature - Technology

Drawing, Painting


 February 15 - April 7, 2007
Opening on Tuesday, February 15, 2007, from 6 to 9pm

Galerie Adler New York is pleased to announce the solo exhibition of new works by the young German artist Peter Feiler. The presentation will include pencil, crayon and ink drawings and paintings.

Peter Feiler focuses on nothing less than the downfall of mankind. The inclination to experiment and the many layers revealed in his works open them to many interpretations that do have one conclusion in common: the rottenness of men will eventually lead them into their own doom. The plethora of miscellaneous subjects, ranging from elaborate new universes to the depiction of orgiastic self destruction and on to a casual criticism of today’s highly intellectualized egomania which he raises like a whirlwind in his pictures, all centre on the main theme: the abysses in human existence.

Under the spell of rich details and bright colors, the spectator is lulled into a false sense of security only to then be hit by the full extent of the brutality of the human soul’s very darkest side. Peter Feiler’s grotesqueries cover the precarious subject of “what men can do to each other“ (Peter Feiler), with a childishly innocent patina standing in harsh contrast to repelling and nevertheless fascinating details. His protagonists’ salacious, almost pornographic poses, scenes of abuse, rape, torture, adultery, are merely alluded at times, at times pointed out in blatant explicitness. “I am not a missionary”, Peter Feiler says, “I don’t want to change people. But maybe I can make them discover something good with their repulsion of my provocations.”

Peter Feiler (*1981, Halle an der Saale, Germany) lives and works in Berlin. Since 2002 he studies at the Academy of Fine Arts Berlin under Prof. Wolfgang Petrick and Daniel Richter. This will be his first one-person exhibition at Galerie Adler in New York and in the United States in general.


Peter Feiler


Drawing, Painting

September 9 - October 14, 2006
Opening on Friday, September 8, 2006, from 6pm

Frankfurt am Main. Laconic and motionless, a beer can in his hand, an open book on his knees, a man sits on the bench of a train that passes industrial buildings spitting out flesh coloured smoke. In his open shirt, his intestines lie idle; his head and face are merely bones and tendons, with mat, staring eyes, as if the skin, protection against the outer world, had been ripped off only to reveal that no mystery lies behind the outer shell, no spark, no passion, just dull loneliness resolving into the void beyond recognition of his surroundings: a second, female figure, naked to less than mere skin, seems to disintegrate in agony, arms and legs distorted in pain while naked children dance like gnomes through the scenery…

A scene directly looking into the every-day-monotony, the joyless banalities of the forever same anybodies in inventory surroundings, literally turning their insides out: A view into the protagonists’ devastated emotional world lying somewhere in the vast range from complete resignation, the quest for meaning and an almost existentialist world-weariness (Tramway scene, 2002).

For the first time in Frankfurt, Galerie Adler present the young Berlin-based artist in a solo exhibition and we would liek to cordially invite you to join us on the opening reception on Friday, Sept 8, 2006 from 6pm. The inclination to experiment and the many-layeredness revealed in the works of Peter Feiler (*1981, Halle an der Saale, Germany) open his works to many interpretations. Yet the plethora of miscellaneous subjects ranging from the orgiastic over whole world systems on to a casual criticism of today’s highly intellectualized egomania (the Paradox of an individualized society, 2001) which he raises like a whirlwind in his pictures all centre around the main theme of the abysses in human existence.

With the unusual medium of coloured pencil’s pastellish tan, Peter Feiler qualifies his grotesqueries and covers the precarious subjects of “what men can do to one another “ (Peter Feiler) with a childishly innocent patina standing in harsh contrast to his protagonists’ salacious, almost pornographic poses:

In the “Final Examination” (2002), a latent aggressiveness in mimics and gestures hides beneath the sweet shades of green and blue and the fragile execution of the poisonous Dieffenbacchia’s overlarge leaves. Under the spell of those rich details, the spectator is lulled into a false sense of security only to then be hit by the full extent of the brutality of a human soul’s very darkest side: Abuse, rape, torture, adultery, merely alluded at times, at times pointed out in blatant explicitness. “I am not a missionary”, Feiler says about himself, “I don’t want to change people. But maybe I can make them discover something good with their repulsion of my provocations.”

„Sex is very ambivalently connotated”, says Feiler, and accordingly his orgiastic ink drawings mainly focus on the negative, the manic aspects of sexual intercourse reduced to an industrial product, teeming of naked bodies and open wounds, of repelling and yet fascinating details, of greed, lasciviousness, self infliction and the psychotic lust in pain and destruction – a portrait of the soul’s shadows (Feast, 2003) the consequences of which he proposes in the drawing “The last man” (2002): with gleaming black eyes, a spider waylays an old, defeated man behind whom a human carcass – his Alter Ego? Hybris itself? - rears up against the colossal architecture in the background.

The epic dimension of Peter Feiler’s open narration spun from isolated fragments and allusions to form dazzling and chaotic patterns gives birth to a painting monumental not as much in size but in content; in the throng of people, men fight gargantuan insects, beer-bellied horsemen dash over the roofs of an unlikely, an impossible city while, moonlike, an alternative world rises headfirst above the scenery as the borderline between the terrific and the terrifying vanishes into a blur. Short scenes like ripped from their context by momentary spotlights mingle, are sent spinning in a maelstrom of antagonistic associations: Peter Feiler plays off the visible against the perceivable (Hüpf Hopf, 2003). He does not offer a strand, refuses to provide a thread through his works and forces the spectators to involve in the complexities, the entanglements and humorous details in a self referential system to eventually mould from it a story of their own.