Christine Herzer

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What changes and developments are to be noted in your work thanks to the residency at the Cité internationale des arts in Montmartre?


"The choice of the window as a medium as well as a means of expression and perception was a decisive choice for my practice.
A window allows the outside and inside to co-exist (co-habitation) and perhaps even to communicate. 
A window is not a wall but it creates distance. It contains a desire.
A window - just like a skin - captures the tension between the intimate, the social and the public. 
Infinite gratitude for the studio H19 and its 8 windows which allowed me to experience and live (= write) my own book.


I understood:
Words inhabit me.
For me, living is a way of writing a place.
For me, writing is my way of living in a place.


I write drawings. 


I understood:
Lack of trust is not a limitation. 

My plastic-literary practice is a form of reciprocal love; a relationship, a form of falling in love and sometimes out of love with language, speaking, and the act of writing;


To sum up, the residence in Montmartre (inhabited place, place of all presences) was a return to the roots as falling madly in love with her own life, the life of an artist poet, including her "invisible" part, her part of invisibility. 
In the words of Louise Bourgeois: You have to accept the fact that others don't see what you doArt is a guarantee for sanity."



An anecdote about your residency at the Cité internationale des arts?


"I had to change studio in the middle of my residence. I had to leave the H19 with its eight windows and its splendid parquet floor to occupy the C02 studio, whose smell and tiled floor I didn't like.

I loved its wooden staircase. I don't like the choice of tiles for the floor – I write on the floor – and I don't like the ends.


I spent two weeks understanding what the C02 floor needed for me to love/write it: I covered it with a transparent plastic sheet. It was used both as a writing medium and as a storage medium. The 'involuntary' change allowed me to offer myself and the visitors to the C02 studio the experience of walking on a skin of words. It covered, exhibited and exhibited works on the ground.

It was undergoing / receiving my steps and weight as well as those of my visitors.

Barthes says that language is a skin, that this skin impacts the skin of the other.









Artist and poet Christine Herzer (France/Germany) makes work that offers the viewer a multitude of meanings, moods, and experiences with which to interact, draw nourishment, and form their own understanding.

Using gestures of 'overwriting’, 'covering up', ‘erasing’ and accumulation, she explores questions of invisibility, alienation and agency. Her series, ‘The TODAY drawings’, for example, is composed of a single word, TODAY, which the artist repeats or feels over and over again, as if rehearsing an ongoing present. 


Christine Herzer's current research project, entitled “I LOVE LANGUAGE. How to make visible the wounds of language?” recontextualizes her ongoing series of '‘Written Drawings’ as a living archive from which to direct her investigations: What is the role of repetition in the creative process? How to show caring/devotion for words, as well as their meanings (emotional centers) and [ab]uses?


Born in Germany, Christine Herzer has lived, worked, and studied in different cultures (India, USA, France, Germany) and contexts (spiritual, artistic, corporate, economic). ORANGE, her new chapbook of poems, will be published by Ugly Duckling Presse (Brooklyn, NY) this summer.


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