Cornelia Schleime is considered the main representative of contemporary figurative painting and is one of the best-known German artists. Her hauntingly developed portraits, especially of women and children, but also of clowns or the Pope, are much admired.
“Many East German artists painted torn faces, thereby showing their closeness to Expressionism. I, on the other hand, changed faces because I had fun playing. I don’t want to let this fun at play be taken away from me and live it out in art.”
As an artist, Cornelia Schleime wants to dissolve the boundaries between the outer and inner worlds. “Support gives me the unpredictable, irrational, fragile, random, eruptive”. Schleime plays with prejudices and provokes by raising explosive questions. In interviews, she talks about her experiences with posing and staging herself.
The dualistic concepts of her works stem from a neo-objective view. The simultaneity of closeness and distance, or topoi such as “interpersonal coldness” and “unrestricted intercourse”. The playful use of quotations, characteristic of the Neue Sachlichkeit between the two world wars, still seems to be current in view of Schleime’s work, as does the constant reclamation of the figurative.
Schleime received numerous grants and awards. Since 1986, Schleime has been featured in over 200 group exhibitions and over 80 solo exhibitions. Her paintings are in collections worldwide, such as the Gemäldegalerie der Staatlichen Kunstsammlungen, Dresden or the collection of the German Bundestag.