German painter Neo Rauch exists in a world of idealised perfection and new world hope. In the vein of the Social Realists or Second World War propaganda posters the figures he paints are totemic figures of sinewy perfection wielding industrial tools, striving collectively for a better future. But there are more sinister elements at play too. The other side of Rauch’s world includes depravity of Hogarthian proportions; ungainly characters swaying uncomfortably and indulging in base desires – all from ambiguous historical origins.
Rauch’s potency exists in his ability to blur these two worlds both visually and conceptually; there’s no fixed perspective in his paintings, scenes and characters bleed seamlessly into one another with dreamlike fluidity and his contradictory themes combine into large-scale surrealist narratives.