n Ciao Mamma tones deliberately shorten complex phenomena and traditional symbols such as palm trees, fountains and birds to trendy icons. The process of reduction also applies to kitschy landscape scenarios. Tönänen skillfully breaks with the romance to present it in all simplicity. What is left of an idyllic landscape of the Lower Rhine or Israel is a red sun or a strong one abstract sunset that continues to insist on its atmospheric aura. Their lampshades become a picture carrier, on which the running together of their paint application simulates the natural change of light and color within minutes. The creeping in of color is further increased in the ceramic glazes. With her deliberate proximity to design objects, Katja Tönißen creates a “democratization of the idyll” - private access to the sunset.
Despite their immediate legibility and symbolism, Tönnissen's objects are created by lengthy, traditional sculptural manufacturing techniques such as bronze or ceramic. The sudden “pop-up” of the symbol contradicts the complexity and duration of its manufacture. In addition to sunsets, she is interested in palm trees. The symbolic content of the palm tree has undergone an iconographic change historically. Established in ancient and religious writings as a sign of victory, peace or a symbol of martyrdom, its meaning changes to the current, popular symbol of the tropics, to the floral ornament and cliché of every holiday experience that flourishes through social media channels. Like the sunset, the palm tree also acts as a projection surface for a good life, outside of the local reality. Katja Tönißen celebrates the course on both a content and formal level - an escapist and longing to reach into other areas between home and distance, simplicity and complexity as well as tradition and innovation.