With the renowned artists Peter Doig (GB), Bjørn Melhus (NO), Thomas Schütte (D) and Christoph Worringer (D), internationally active artists were guests at the Clemens Sels Museum Neuss. As different and independent as their work is, they are closely connected by the central drive of their artistic work: the fascination and pleasure in dealing with ambiguous, symbolically charged images.
The Clemens Sels Museum Neuss owns a collection of international Symbolist paintings that is unique in Germany and is held in high esteem worldwide. And so it seemed only consistent and logical that for the first time the Neuss museum, with the exhibition "Beloved Enemies - Symbolism Today," should explore those revolutionary innovations of Symbolism that continue to shape the work of artists to this day. In doing so, the exhibition countered the prevailing view that Symbolism is closed and belongs solely to the past. For exactly the opposite is the case! Its ideas and aesthetic quality are present in the work of numerous contemporary artists who, through the language of symbols and the intrinsic value of color, make their works a mirror of their souls and subconscious, their dreams and visions. Through the selected artists were represented in the exhibition both sculpture and painting, as well as drawing, printmaking and video, whose overall show condensed into unique embodiments of the enigmatic.