November 24, 2016 - January 28, 2017 Anaid Art Gallery Berlin

Daniel Harms' newest series Mirrors, evolves around the ghostly presence of a mirror and its contribution to the way we see ourselves. It indulges in the way the mirror becomes a personification of our deepest desires reflecting the endless dualism of what we see, the ways we deceive ourselves and the underlying  notion of truth which is often hidden from the mirrors angles. The series taking on the spirit of "The picture of Dorian Grey" by Oscar Wild evolves around this  notion of the ideal view leading to a sense of disillusionment due to the gap between truth and deception. 


Even if we manage to fulfill our deepest desires, we will always find the urge to come up with and attain more, bigger and greater wishes to satisfy new urges. Something will always be missing, lost in the vastness of our being for us to be able to reach absolute, pure happiness. But when it comes down to it, what is it really that has the ability to make us happy? Can happiness ever reach a timeless state? When you have reached your goal your desires will evolve and you will create new goals that strive towards happiness. Your daily mishmash becomes a routine and your endless search becomes a tiring stretch of your quotidian existence. But what are you searching for? What has the ability to gratify your deepest longings? After all, all we are doing is trying to satisfy the deepest doubts of our own ego in the hope that the more we cherish it the more content we become. But that is an erroneous syllogism, a false conclusion and simple deception! The more your ego is fed, the hungrier it gets and the more it demands. Feed it all you want, it will never grow to be untroubled as it becomes the embodiment of an addict within you trapped in a prison of wishes and demands. You fall by the wayside and become a slave of your own desires. We think about it, because we arrived at a point of absolute truth in which only cellular vibrancy exists, the lines, our lines are a remembrance of our basic instincts that want to be awakened again. Being "dirty" itself is the messenger of truth that wants to be awaken, everything else is just hypocrisy. "If we are alive, we can do anything." - Daniel Harms.


Harms' newest series is composed of ten works and a triptych, representing his resistance against conformity and popular opinions, for his obstinate nature with a sense of slight defiance. He avoids returning to the conflict evolving around his past naïve accusations of being excitingly "grotesque" steering away from concessions of undemanding, straightforward readability of the work. It was three years ago that the Berlin resident, Daniel Harms found his path to his painterly style and gesture in which he strives since. Although Harms will never dismiss the style that gave him his voice, something is clearly evolving: the works are becoming more dynamic and thus busier in style. The methodology has become far more relaxed yet not less sinister than his past series as the figures take on a ghostly nature standing comfortably in the background, their complex obscure affairs continue to obtain presence within the work. The new pallet is  filtered almost muted and  subdued, as if the colors are completely absent.


In "Der Aberglaube - The Superstition" slipperiness and perhaps a certain sense of evasiveness is brought to the table, which contributes to the risk of slipping that withholds itself in the various layers of the work. The ingenious, rendezvous accidental slips that flourish in surrealist contexts and manifest themselves as cliffhangers of stories are only hinted at cautiously. He carries on, the way he likes it. The puzzles are there, for those with the time to indulge in a world of tragedy marked by hints and clues that lead to an insight of narrative untold. Similar to the oppression to the dictatorship of the global capital.


Lili Hager


Daniel Harms was born in 7th October 1980 and has based himself in Berlin since 2007. Inspired by his own personal history and events deeply rooted in his hometown Hamburg. Daniel creates art focused on alienation and connection. Reality is exaggerated so that it at times seems real simply through the exaggeration. Harms art trademark colorful aesthetics showing characters in scenarios that overlap in time and space. In the past Harms shared exhibitions with renowned artists such as Gerhard Richter, Georg Baselitz, Markus Lüpertz, A.R. Penk and H.R. Giger.