Johanna Tiedtke

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Born 1981 in Eckernförde, Germany

Lives and works in New York


2016                MFA, Hochschule für bildende Künste (HfbK), Hamburg

2016                MFA, Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts, Bard College, NY

2012                Diploma, Hochschule für bildende Künste (HfbK), Hamburg



Bearing. Traces of [Dis]location. (with Bernd Klug), Austrian Cultural Forum, NYC

Hanna Burow. Overbeck-Gesellschaft, Kunstverein Lübeck

Bearing. (with Bernd Klug), Galerie Freihausgasse Stadt Villach (AT)


Von anderen Welten. Galerie der Stadt Remscheid


Der Morgen stirbt nie. (with Tammo Winkler), Künstlerverein Malkasten, Düsseldorf


Ein Stück Zeit. (with Tammo Winkler), Fleetstreet Theater, Hamburg

Von neuerwachten Welten. Diploma Exhibition, Hochschule für bildende Künste (HfbK), Hamburg


Vom Ende der Welt. (with Tammo Winkler), Westwerk, Hamburg



25 EFA. Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts, NYC


Salon der Gegenwart. Hamburg

Untwining Noise, To See. Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts, NYC

Absolventenausstellung. Hochschule für bildende Künste (HfbK), Hamburg


Von neuerwachten Welten. Jahresgaben, Overbeck-Gesellschaft, Kunstverein Lübeck

Bard College MFA Thesis Exhibition. UBS Gallery, Red Hook, NY


On Painting. Frappant, Hamburg

Panel Discussion & Various Formats Are Appropriate. Silvershed, NYC

We Are Dude Core. This Red Door, Kunsthalle Galapagos, Brooklyn, NY


Treizeshow. Treize Gallery, Paris (FR)

Under The Influence. Wiensowski & Harbord, Berlin

Visionen. Atmosphären der Veränderung. Marta Herford

Hamburger Bahnhof. Power Galerie, Hamburg


Last Edition. Galerie Oel-Früh, Hamburg


BLACKY Blocked Radiants Sunbathed. (with DAS INSTITUT, UNITED BROTHERS, Nuh Duong and HfbK Hamburg), Halle für Kunst, Lüneburg

A-M-S-D-C-B-W-S-S. (with Ei Arakawa, Yuki Kimura, Jutta Koether and HfbK Hamburg), DAAD-Galerie, Berlin

New Classics. Elektrohaus, Hamburg

What the Fox. Goldsmiths College, London (GB)


Von den Dingen und zurück. Sammlung Lenikus, Vienna (AT)

Index 10. Kunsthaus Hamburg

Nur die Kunst ist künstlich, alles andere ist Theater. Galerie Oel-Früh, Hamburg

R-Klasse. Golden Pudel Club, Hamburg

The Peatles. Fehrbelliner Straße 34, Berlin

Satellites. Freies Museum, Berlin


Index 09. Kunsthaus Hamburg

Hunger. LeRoy Neiman Gallery, Columbia University, NYC

Saunabarstudio, Schau und Feier. Stadtbad Wedding, Berlin

Rock Bottom Weekend. Kunsthaus KuLe, Berlin

Baahlsaahm #1 Knochen. Berlin

Builder Vor Boatin. Silvershed, NYC


Index 08. Kunsthaus Hamburg

5. Runde. Infernoesque, Berlin

Wenn nicht für Gott, dann für wen? Villa Daniel Richter, Hamburg

Hamburg Goonies. Wir nennen es Hamburg, Kampnagel, Hamburg


Shining. Galerie Total Artspace, Berlin

Gestern, Heute, Übermorgen. Westwerk, Hamburg

Rio. Artnews Project, Berlin


Farewell Berlin. Galerie Brun, Düsseldorf

Außer Haus. Uferstr. 6, Berlin

The Courtesy of Thorsten Eyer. Ballhaus Ost, Berlin


2016 – 2018     Studio Program, Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts, NYC

2016                Travel Award, Kulturstiftung Schleswig-Holstein

Artist in Residence (with Bernd Klug), Institute For Electronic Arts,

Alfred University, NY

2013 – 2015    MFA scholarship and fellowship, Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY

2013                One-year graduate scholarship, German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD)

MFA one-year scholarship, Karl H. Ditze Stiftung, Hamburg

2012                Fleetstreet Residency (with Tammo Winkler), Fleetstreet Theater, Hamburg

2012                Project Grant, Rudolf Augstein Stiftung, Hamburg

2011                Project Grant, Karl H. Ditze Stiftung, Hamburg



salondergegenwart 2016. Exhibition catalog, edited by Christian Holle, published by Gudberg Nerger, Hamburg

HFBK Jahrbuch 2015 / 16 Band 1. Edited by Martin Köttering, published by

Hochschule für bildende Künste, Hamburg

Notes: On Administration. Edited by Kylie Gilchrist / Megan Stockton, published by Publication Studio, Portland, OR

Hanna Burow. Monograph, edited by Oliver Zybok, published by Revolver, Berlin

Lerchenfeld HfbK Nr. 32. Edited by Martin Köttering, published by Materialverlag,  Hamburg


Bard College MFA Thesis Exhibition. Exhibition catalog, edited by Arthur Gibbons,  Annandale-on-Hudson, NY


Visionen. Exhibition catalog, edited by Marta Herford, published by Hatje Cantz, Ostfildern


Absolventen 2011 / 12. Exhibition catalog, edited by Martin Köttering, published by Materialverlag, Hamburg

Johanna Tiedtke. Von neuerwachten Welten. Hamburg


Yabberwocky / Von den Dingen und zurück. Exhibition catalog, Materialverlag, Hamburg

30 Jahre Heitland Foundation. Edited by Volker Heitland, published by Heitland   Foundation, Celle


Index 10. Exhibition catalog, edited by Elena Winkel, Hamburg

2009                Index 09. Exhibition catalog, edited by Elena Winkel, Hamburg

2008                Index 08. Exhibition catalog, edited by Elena Winkel, Hamburg

How can I question the role of painting in a digital age?

I combine different planes of perception by layering psychological, historical, and digital spaces in order to transform time and architectural space.

My work dissolves hierarchies among technique and medium within painting and digital media.    Every work wants to close a gap of memory which can’t be closed. Through the presentation of absence in image and memory, my work addresses the vulnerability of both; an image and our perception of images in a digital time.

One layer is biographical and uses embroideries my great-aunt made while suffering from dementia. Each of her embroideries was made at a different stage of memory loss; the patterns she created became more and more disorganized until they eventually fell apart. Her embroideries embody a transmission failure that gave rise to a new creativity: she broke through the pattern, but somehow stayed within her own logic. With the example of my great-aunt’s disease I attempt to describe something social and elaborate my interest in cross generational legacies of traumas, of the unspoken, and approach the question of how my own generation has coped with them.

Other layers are contemporary or historical references and cite ambivalent spaces like camouflage, fence grids, and depictions of digital landscapes from video games like Minecraft, as well as various gardens: the one in Northern Germany where I grew up during the cold war; The Garden of Paradise by an unknown German painter of the early 15th century; and Pompeiian and late Roman garden frescos.

The work starts with digital files of these layers: I scan the embroideries, edit them digitally, and partially transform the cross stitches into pixels. In other cases I digitally collage multiple layers of files, including the scans of the embroideries. The files are printed onto a wooden surface. The print is transparent so as to allow the grain of the wood to shine through, providing another layer, a counter image. I paint on the print, adding several more layers described above, creating a dialogue between painting and print, between manual created marks and digital ones, and the painters hand reacting to the industrial created UV-prints. In addition I often install the paintings in dialog with external other materials and media such as glass and projections. Like in the formation of the embroideries themselves, there are transmission failures in each step, creating a space of abstraction.

All layers are applied with varying fragmentations and opacities and made only partially visible. The painting process is INTENTIONALLY slow and laborious, mirroring the stitching process itself. The atmosphere of the paintings creates an uncertain state. A hunt of what was and will be. A push and pull of perception. A review.  A drone perspective on human existence in a digital time.

You must read slowly, like a somewhat difficult text, to allow time for it to give up its visual secrets in increments. It insists that you stay, pause, wait; see, and then see more. This demand is for a form of attention, as if you were being asked to enter a chamber denuded of distraction, where the eyes seeing and the mindhearts listening conjoin. As if the work were asking us to see the silence.

(Ann Lauterbach Johanna Tiedtkes Wall Pieces: Rescuing Silence, 2015)