Jule Korneffel, born and raised in Germany, graduated from Kunstakademie Düsseldorf in 2008 as Meisterschüler under Tal R. In 2015 she moved to New York, where she feels the particular inspirations of Mary Heilmann and Agnes Martin. After graduating from the M.F.A. program at Hunter College in 2018, Korneffel quickly gained attention for emotional but reductive paintings: recent shows include Phase Patterns at ltd los angeles, Here comes trouble at Spencer Brownstone in NYC and Mini Me Mary in Dialogue with Mary Heilmann at Albada Jelgersma Gallery in Amsterdam.
Korneffel’s abstract style of inscriptive mark making follows a minimalist sensibility yet, by allowing underpainting to remain visible, the paintings reveal a process of reduction and the layering appears as a filtering of experiences. The picture plane is a lived experience in which she is able to arrive at precise forms and colours by what she calls ‘floating through its creation’.
In her exhibition All that kale with Claas Reiss in November 2020, A sun is the most recent and most reduced work with its one single mark on an ochre-ish ground. As in all her paintings, Korneffel imbued personal every day life experience into abstract language. ‘Suns are isolated and shine’ says Korneffel, referring to living in NYC during the Coronavirus pandemic.
As simple and easy-going as the paintings might appear on first impression, it takes time for them to entirely unfold, having grown over time to multiple layers of paint. John Yau describes colour as ‘the carrier of emotion’ in Korneffel’s paintings, slowly manifested through the repetitive adding and taking away. Like the mind, these paintings never seem to stand still. Their floating form is reduced thus open—ended, concrete but incomplete. The works are continuums of time and space, still remain fragments, and provide space for viewers’ experiences rather than suggesting a certain path or meaning. All that kale asks us to live in these paintings for a moment — making time to return to ourselves.