Isabel Albrecht’s acquaintance could have easily remained a well meant favour as she was the school mate of the brother of an old high school friend and happened to study at the RCA in London. The favour was fortunately made and Isabel became a dear friend whose passing away was devastating and untimely, also for her art. Fortunately she left us with an impressive oeuvre nevertheless. Isabel’s lively character often felt opposed to the structured compositions with self-imposed rules, almost like therapy. Yet the concentration, luminescence, thoughtfulness and beauty of her works truly echo her being just as well.
Isabel Albrecht’s works are persistently formal, elaborate und comprehensively designed. Each composition follows their inner logic as the connecting element. Even more important is the line, which can be considered the fundamental principle underlying her creative process. Vertical or horizontal variations in grey; thicker and thinner lines; broken or continuous, from top to bottom or from left to right. Albrecht’s drawings and paintings are systematic, pure and occasionally even appear automated being generated as a result of their rigorous organizational structure.
Albrecht draws and paints her lines freehand, letting a human aspect slip into her system. The convergence though is totally on form, technique and work process. Thus colour becomes all the more important as it supports the works’ idiosyncrasy and is specifically applied to provoke feelings that might contrast the rational planning. Unlike other artists’ abstract creations, whose colours often reflect surrounding influences such as Agnes Martin’s works which depict the light of the Mexican desert, Albrecht keeps her works mainly in grey tones of different variations or monochrome only playing with varying colour densities of the ink. Her works are discreet, not charged with emotion. Only a few works allow a more in-depth expression of feelings and intensity, for example the works on paper from the late ‘Lines and Forms’ series which develop much more freely in dealing with colour.
Despite her systematic approach, the artist’s point of origin is a phenomenological recording of the world in which reality consists of objects and events as they are perceived or understood in human consciousness. Likewise Albrecht understands her art as the result of a conscious experience.
Isabel Albrecht recently had two posthumous survey exhibitions at Basis e.V., Frankfurt am Main in 2016 and Kunsthalle Lingen in 2017.
Exhibitions at the gallery:
The Colour and the Shape, 2017 (group show with James Brooks, Caroline Kryzecki, Karim Noureldin and Dillwyn Smith)
Isabel Albrecht, Lines and Forms, 2011 (solo show)
Stand in line, 2009 (group show with Lucie Beppler, Astrid Bowlby and Károly Keserü)
Isabel Albrecht, Colour Progression, 2008 (solo show)