...Niko Riedinger is very aware of the interplay of appropriation and reference in his work. He views it as a game traditionally driven by power and exclusion. By questioning the universal validity and historical shelf life of a symbol, he resists systems in which the recognition and understanding of a sign is a rite of passage. Or rather, systems in which certain – socio-culturally determined – readings of the sign have become an oppressive norm. In fiery strokes of paint and hysterical compositions he claims control over the signifier. He tries to open it up for subjective interpretations by breaking its armor of absolute reproducibility. Is the abstracted image of a pine tree – a recurring visual element in his work – a reference to the dark woods of his native Germany, to the iconic air freshener or to the fact that humans like to reduce their lived reality to bite-sized portions? Niko seems to ask for a postponement of the answer, a moment to take in nothing but the shape  and the way it manifests itself in paint...

 

 

 

from 'Oily Substance' by Emiel van der Pol