RM.Nr.:0608121431, Pigment, Raindrops, Fixed on Canvas, 60x90cm,
Data Sheet: Location: Graz (347m), Date: 12.08.2006, Time: 14:31,
Exposure: 11 sec, Temperature: 13.2°C, Barometric Pressure: 1008 hPa,
Atmospheric Humidity: 96%, Report: slow risie moderate rain, breeze.
Having always been fascinated by the natural spectacle of Rain, Daniel Hafner has made a habit of observing it. What he wanted was to “experience and feel the weather changing, what kind of rain it is, what the atmosphere is, what forces are at work”.
Hafner does not eschew the reproach of exaggerated didactics. On the contrary, complete disclosure of the creation of the work is his very intention, as it is tantamount to a proof as used in science. Therefore, the artist also reveals his insignia, tools such as weather clock and stopwatch, scales, face-mask, binder and pigment.
Production of the snapshots is planned meticulously: the first step is to expose the picture supports to the rain and then to dust them evenly with a mixture of binder and pigment using a motor-driven sieve. Where the raindrops hit the surface of the pictures, the pigment bonds with the solvent and the canvas. The next step is to dry the pictures and remove the remaining binder and pigment dust that did not get wet. The signs of rain are fixed on the base.
Hafner adds precise descriptions of the conditions at the time of recording, indicating the date, time, duration of rain, temperature, wind, air pressure and relative humidity. Both the measurements and image data, that testify to the properties of the particular precipitation, can be seen as objective descriptions of the given situation. If we were to view the Rain Momentums out of their context, they might be misinterpreted as a print-out made by the artist. While, from an extrapolatory viewpoint, it seems legitimate to associate concepts from the theory of art such as “action painting” or “abstract-expressive” with Hafner’s moving records, the genesis of these documents must be interpreted – if not appreciated! – as one that is free of emotions and independent. The traces culminating on the canvas arouse sensations in us that enrich pure cognition with the significant added value of perceived recognition – a fact that Daniel Hafner incorporates into his concepts. In this way it is possible to apprehend the poetry of rain moments in the two-dimensional sphere.
by Monika Pessler (from the book: Dialogue(s) Reflecting on all things merely experienced)