Tunnel: Johannes Nagel Porcelain Works from 2018 to 2023

Book  /  Arnoldsche   Ceramic   Monograph
Published: 12.07.2023
Tunnel: Johannes Nagel Porcelain Works from 2018 to 2023.
Esther Niebel
Glenn Adamson
John White
Text by:
Esther Niebel, John White, Glenn Adamson
Edited by:
Arnoldshe Art Publishers
Edited at:
Edited on:
Technical data:
160 pages 22 x 33 cm, 144 ills. Hardcover English / German
ISBN 978-3-89790-694-5
from 38 €
Arnoldsche Art Publishers
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The ceramics by Johannes Nagel (*1979) have all the traits of vessels, even if the artist at times deliberately destroys their functionality In using his mostly archaic technique, he repeatedly pushes classical ceramic concepts to their limits, and beyond. The publication Tunnel presents the artist’s works from the last five years.

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The objects by Johannes Nagel are often based on hollow spaces: dug out by hand from the sand as negative forms, they are then moulded and ultimately revealed using liquid porcelain. During this process, the diameter of the hand quantifies both the tunnel that emerges and thus also that of the finished works, which appear organic and earth-like.

Nagel has imprinted his own presence into them and this can be interpreted – above all, in the larger objects – as a human dimension. A torso, ribcage, waist, hips, arms and neck not only resonate as imagined anthropomorphism; they also have a real-life correlation in the artist’s movements during his excavation of the forms.

Breaching the closed nature of a vessel fundamentally expunges the object’s practical quality. A free-associative game unfolds, as with any other medium, yet there is always a corpus-like volume, one that not only creates presence but encloses something too. In addition to the remarkable forms, the highly expressive colours and the painting of the objects take on a central role in Nagel’s work. Beyond the enhancement or restraint of different parts or the pure delight in chromaticity, the colour, glaze and pattern evoke ostensible origins of ceramics from very different cultures.

​The publication provides an overview of the artist’s works from 2018 to 2023. These extraordinary objects are vividly showcased in full-page photographs, while essays by renowned experts examine his oeuvre from very different perspectives. A special book on one of the most exciting German ceramicists of our time.
Nagel Johannes. Vase: Movement / Pattern, 2022. Ceramic. 73 × 44 × 45 cm. Photo by: Tom Dachs. Nagel Johannes
Vase: Movement / Pattern, 2022
73 × 44 × 45 cm
Photo by: Tom Dachs
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Johannes Nagel. Vase: Feldlinien #3, 2023. Ceramic. 72 × 34 × 32 cm. Photo by: Tom Dachs. Johannes Nagel
Vase: Feldlinien #3, 2023
72 × 34 × 32 cm
Photo by: Tom Dachs
© By the author. Read Copyright.
Inner pages.
Inner pages

© By the author. Read Copyright.