The directness of mind
Notes on the work of the artist Soshana
by Hofrat Prof. Dr. Walter Koschatzky, former president of the Graphische Sammlung Albertina Vienna
published in "Die Gemeinde", Okt.1997
Paintings and drawings 1945-1997
Palais Pàlffy 1010 Vienna, Josefsplatz 6
9. - 19. October 1997 - 7.30 p.m.
Inconceivable cruelty has destroyed millions of lives and left countless peoples uprooted. Uncounted fates, cut off paths of life, devastated hopes. Countless examples show how the most sensitive natures, the artists of a whole period, lost themselves in this tragedy. Still, it is also proved that personal distress and forlornness may create the exact opposite: increased strength, open-mindedness, meaningful impulses from encounters, experiences, immersions.
I clearly recognise this phenomena in Soshana's work. She, who was born in Vienna, did not let it destroy her, instead she has grown stronger. Probably nothing expresses the deepest emotions of an artist better than drawings. They allow the artist to express him- or herself directly and spontaneously and they open our perception for the incommunicable; the cipher becomes the medium for the most delicate messages. Just like G.W.Hegel expressed it in one of his most remarkable sentences during his lectures on aesthetics in 1817, "Sketches drawn by hand deserve our highest interest. It is a miracle how the mind is transferred to the hand."
The ink and watercolour brush paintings by Soshana emerge from her experiences in China. The tender landscapes with their floating atmosphere, as well as the calligraphic compositions, their noble style and their explosive highlights speak to us who are in the privileged situation so sense her art and mind. A marvellous language telling us about her strength, open-mindedness and her deepest inner wealth.
Born in Vienna in 1927, Soshana spent most of her life in Paris and New York; she has travelled countless times all around the world. She has made friends with some of the most important artists and intellectuals of our century, amongst other, Giacometti, Brancusi and Picasso, who portrayed her a couple of times in the 1950ies. Soshana has been living and working in Vienna since 1985.