Carsten’s ever-changing studio is like that of a mad scientist; constant and stormy. I always appreciate the buzzing of activity that touches me like static electricity each time I enter. I’ve mentioned in conversation what it's like to meet an artist’s work before you meet the artist. There are a few who stand out in my experience where I enjoy the work at the same level I enjoy the person. Carsten is one of those people.

When I first encountered the work, it was at the Hawthorne Arts Complex; I had been there for years prior and Carsten had recently moved in. I was immediately drawn in by the materials: burlap with a variety of thin and thick paint, it had an immediacy that I was attracted to. The way he builds up and tears down the surface of a painting is very engaging. I suppose you could call him “a painter’s painter” because he lets us in on the process. Or allows us clues into what the process could have been, maybe that’s the fun of it. Tracing the layers of color and marks to imagine what his process was like and trying to recreate in our minds what could have happened in that wild studio.

I immediately tried to curate him into a show I was developing for a space on the westside of Los Angeles and I hadn’t even met him yet. I’d heard tales in school of Leo Castelli getting super riled up when he encountered an artwork that really jazzed him up, apparently he would start stuttering and stumbling over his words when that happened. I can get like that sometimes, its almost like having a crush. I’d get nervous and sweaty, probably blush too. Sometimes the color and form is just right, or just mysterious enough, or just funny enough to really hit you. That is the power of artwork!

says Stephanie Sherwood