Ena Oppenheimer

Morphogenesis X, 2O2O 
Oil, canvas  
70 x70 cm 

Ena Oppenheimer (*1972 Waiblingen, DE) celebrates, explores and dissects all kinds of forms in her paintings. Oppenheimer’s curiosity concerning form, and the way it is perceived, stems from an accident in her childhood that sent her into a state of shock and changed the way she looked at the world. The artist now operates on the interface between art and science, human cognition and human perception, the knowable and the limits to experience.  

The series title Morphogenesis refers to the biological process through which a cell, tissue or organism achieves a certain form or shape. The series itself arose from conversations that Oppenheimer had during the course of several years with the biophysicist Erich Sackmann, concerning his research into the way proteins can adapt their form based on the forms around them. This inspired the artist to reflect on the “intelligence of life” and whether there is such a thing as “intelligent form”, or even some degree of “recognition” or “feeling” that takes place at a molecular level. Oppenheimer’s paintings therefore suggest an intermingling of organic cellular forms floating on a neutral background and colliding with brightly coloured geometric surfaces.  


© Ena Oppenheimer