Felix Pötzsch, o.T., 2021, Papier, Acrylfarbe, Farbiges Papier, Holzrahmen, Bleistift, 50 x 60 cm, Foto: Ivan Murzin

On a sunny autumn day, I go to a Lidl parking lot - for a conversation with Felix Pötzsch. When the artist announces the meeting place in advance, I am irritated. Is this supposed to be a joke? Or have I missed the re-functioning of parking lots in front of discount stores into a common place for interviews?

We find a seat on an uncomfortable metal lattice staircase that leads to the railroad tracks, and from there we can get a good view of the parking lot area. Young trees and pragmatic hedges border the Sunday-empty asphalt surface. From time to time, trains race past us and cars are being cleaned at the adjacent gas station while cool music plays. As we begin our conversation, it becomes clear to me that the choice of location is not a prank, but is closely related to the artist's way of working. Felix is interested in the simple, the invisible, and the ordinary that surrounds us every day and how the perception of it can be altered by sober observation and striking representation, bringing out the grotesque in the everyday. For example, what does something as mundane as a parking lot say about our society? What does the parking lot say to those who go there day after day to perform one of the most trivial activities - shopping - and the basic need of food supply that goes with it. And is the parking lot just coincidentally related to the park? After all, trees grow here, too, and obviously a parking lot is where dating can take place. The difference is probably that this place was created exclusively for resting cars and people meet in the park and in the parking lot. But isn't it absurd to note what we don't notice much in everyday life, namely how much space in the city is used to park automobiles?

Ausstellungsansicht Koi_Pond, 2021, AtelierFrankfurt, Foto: Ivan Murzin

Felix Pötzsch, o.T., 2021, Fotopapier, Acrylfarbe, Bleistift, 110 x 70 cm, Foto: Ivan Murzin

Such sober observations serve as sources of inspiration for Felix. The resulting artworks, however, do not stiffen to a recurring medium. It can be a photo series, a performative reading, an installation, video, painting or drawing. Rather, the question is which form of representation is appropriate for the current idea and best expresses it. For example, observations, feelings and thoughts related to the experienced architecture in Mexico, Athens and here in this country were translated into drawings in about 60 multi-colored and lightweight Din A4 papers with means such as watercolor acrylic paints and colored pencils. In this series, called Houses, Stargates, Portals, Felix explores the nature of buildings. How does the existence of a house affect its surroundings and what power relations and mouthpieces come to light in it? What role does their architecture and design play? And what does it mean to enter into a relationship with buildings. For Felix, buildings are not superficially reduced to their function, and it is not a mere composition of building materials and design ideas. Rather, he sees them as organisms that surround us and require humans as a host. A house is not a living thing, but it affects the person who stays in it because of its nature and vice versa. Man shapes it and keeps it alive by his presence or brings it to a standstill by his absence. "The house as a place of thought of man himself. Substructure, structure, roofing, masonry, facade. I see houses as a kind of portal or thought construct," Felix said.

Ausstellungsansicht Koi_Pond, 2021, AtelierFrankfurt, Foto: Ivan Murzin

Felix Pötzsch, o.T., 2020, Farbiges Papier, Acrylfarbe, Lackierter, Holzrahmen, Bleistift, 21 x 30 cm, Foto: Ivan Murzin

Ausstellungsansicht Koi_Pond, 2021, AtelierFrankfurt, Foto: Ivan Murzin

The drawings that emerged from these thoughts are proposals - a kind of architectural designs for houses, with the idea of capturing the state in which the house becomes visible as an organism. Ornament plays an important role in this. Soberly considered, it is absurd and illogical for the artist to decorate a house in itself, because a square building would also fulfill the function of a house. At the same time, decoration, like poetry, is the cornerstone of culture, according to Felix. Based on his thinking about ornaments as a decorative gesture and by means of his drawing designs, Felix wants to create new houses. In doing so, he works with patterns and highly magnified elements in order to put them in an absurd context with the functionality of the houses. In this context, the artist speaks of painting grotesquely. By this he means that certain elements are exaggerated into the absurd and humorous. Elements from high culture are brought together with those of "low culture" to mix everything up in the end and create new house ideas. "After all, you can't build houses just like that," Felix states realistically. And so the thoughts that arise while contemplating the outside world become houses - each house drawn embodies a thought.

The drawings remind me of Playmobil castles, with its cannons, bridges, and drop locks - houses stripped of their actual function. Sometimes a house looks like a magnified squiggle detail, but on the small paper format it still looks mighty and massive. If there are ornaments and decorations on the buildings, why not scale them up in the form of a whole house? Some of the houses have feet, arms and genitals and I wonder what would happen if these sketches were actually erected as buildings. Did the sketches for the Teatre-Museu Dalí or those of the architect Gaudí also initially look like this? For the "good" and elevated taste it might probably seem kitschy and bizarre, but such houses would certainly not harm our everyday and functional perception. And Felix says, "but you know, isn't our reality already very weird anyway?"

Text: Sonja Yakovleva

The exhibition catalog can be purchased via KVTV shop.

Felix Pötzsch, o.T., 2020, Fotopapier, Acrylfarbe, Bleistift, 70 x 70 cm, Foto: Ivan Murzin

Ausstellungsansicht Koi_Pond, 2021, AtelierFrankfurt, Foto: Ivan Murzin

Felix Pötzsch, o.T., 2020, Fotopapier, Acrylfarbe, Bleistift, 90 x 70 cm, Foto: Ivan Murzin