Pop is everything. Everything is Pop

Frauke Beeck is fluent in different picture languages and uses them multimedia-based. With her funbags and spray pictures developed from these she uses the collage, an extremely complex way of composing, formally as well as semantically, that was made one of the most fascinating forms of art in the 20 th century by cubists like Pablo Picasso and George Braque and dadaists like Kurt Schwitters and Max Ernst. The artist refers directly to the texture of popular picture languages like graffiti and comic and their electronic processing today; the external resemblance of her commercial models to her artistic transcriptions is a most intentional trap that makes her audience easily overstep the so-called threshold of fine art.

With this concept Frauke Beeck proves herself to be an intelligent and an extremely innovative border crosser between the world of commercial pictures and their adolescent addressees and an autonomous art that withdraws from superficial consumption.

She produces active platforms of relevance by means of common idiograms – in her “naïve” transfer pictures you find signs of violence that are often terms of commercially whipped up and thus deceptive expectations leading to disappointment. But the complex, permanent changing picture and language games do not want to teach, they focus on jokes and irony, on signs and music of an “underground” making the new buildings of yesterday and today collapse with relish.

Frauke Beeck’s direct ancestors are artists like Peter Blake and Richard Hamilton who were the first in the sixties to exemplify the metamorphosis of non-art into art and vice versa. Just as Frauke Beeck’s funbags could be called “functional art” the same or slightly modified compositions in her spray pictures are art. Among other things Peter Blake painted pictures of pop stars that could be used as record covers. The same applies to the early serigraphs of Richard Hamilton. Consequently Peter Blake created the most famous pop collage world wide with the cover of the Beatles’ lp “Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” and Richard Hamilton transferred the great tradition of minimalism in 20th century art that had started in 1915 with Kasimir Malewitsch’s black square on white ground, on the cover of the similarly well-known Beatles’ “ White Album” that consisted of white cardboard with “The Beatles” printed relief-like on it.

Looking at recent Chinese paintings, such as those at the Biennale in Venice 1999 striking parallels unfold with the close connection of culture and counter culture, even if national picture and political structures are very different. This difference makes Frauke Beeck’s art very modern in China.

Prof. Dr. Hans-Joachim Manske
Director of the City Gallery Bremen