Ulrike Theusner's ink drawings in our current 2-person exhibition, “Les Fleurs du Mal,” on view through December 14th
These ink drawings are based on William Hogarth’s famous etchings “A Rake’s Progress” and the photographs of Jerome Zerbe’s Book “Happy Times.” The drawings describe the decline of a rich heir over the course of eight chapters. The protagonist is a lethargic puppet, the heir to a rich merchant, who over the course of the story wastes all his money on gambling and prostitution, eventually resulting in his being sent to prison and later to a home for the mentally ill. It is not a moral commentary as originally intended by Hogarth, but a metaphorical description of today’s society. This lifestyle offers no satisfaction for the protagonist and he finally ends up in a psychiatric hospital, surrounded by histrionic monkey figurines in baroque costumes: humans behave like monkeys and monkeys behave like humans.