“Summer in the City >108°F”
(original title: “Sommer in der Stadt >42°C”)
Artist: Benjamin Klemencic
Painting: acrylic on canvas, on stretcher, gallery wrap
Size: (height x width x depth)
39.4 x 27.6 x 0.8 in
100 x 70 x 2 cm
Year: 2015

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The Greek philosopher Diogenes of Sinope is said to have lived in a bathtub. I can imagine this very well and simply ignore the assumption that it could be a translation error of Seneca’s saying that a man with such small demands could just as well live in a “pithos”, a ton.

Actually summer is a very nice season – but not in this city. Here, urban planners have either not recognized the importance of green spaces or have no way of correcting the sins of the past.

Heat. The advantage of cold is that you can simply put something on. But what if it is already unbearably hot and sultry being naked?

Breath flatly, motionless – and plan to move to the countryside?

However, I cannot stand it long to be so idle. And so this painting arose in a true act of violence.

Recently I was told that it would be interesting to see how my paintings are made, how some of them are partially or completely painted over and how they change, how different, partly self-made painting materials are used and the like. I should film the entire creative process.

But just with this painting it is very good that I have not recorded anything on video so far.

It would simply be an impertinence for the viewer to see me standing in the bathtub, while I MUST express my completely absurd anger to more than 108°F in the shade in a concrete desert surrounded by softened asphalt – with a considerable amount of color.

“Summer in the City >108°F” (original: “Sommer in der Stadt >42°C”) is an absolute exception: otherwise, I work quite civilized at the easel. Should I set up a camera to prove it to you?