The monuments of Berlin are sacred spaces, sacred objects. Built of bullet-scarred stone and metal, restored and repaired, of angels, warriors, animals and weeping mothers. They show death, sex, desire, violence, battle and adoration.
They are artefacts of importance handed down to us. Passed down from generation to generation saying
‘Here! Here is what we valued. Here is what we loved. Remember us.’
These works explore permanence and impermanence. What we are left with after loss, how we remember and how we continue.
The ash used is physically of Berlin, a substance of the city, changed by fire and now transmuted into new artworks. Referencing Berlin’s history as a city burnt and reborn so Gareth chooses ash as the medium for these paintings.
The ash was sourced from the refugee campfires on the Berlin Tempelhof Feld. Chunks of charcoal, ground to fine powder, are mixed with water and painted like giant water colours.