The Artist Esther Stocker

Esther Stocker, who was born in Silandro, Italy, studied in Milan and Pasadena before moving to Vienna, where she now lives. Stocker has shown her minimalist, monochrome paintings, photography and installations at prestigious galleries across the globe, including Brussels’ Centre for Contemporary Non-Objective Art and Vienna’s Museum Moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig Wien.

Can you describe the work of art that you created for 5 Hanover Square?

The work is based on a grid structure: It’s a black background with small, geometric white parts. It’s an L-shape, with some panels visible from the street, and the longer part of it lining the wall of the lobby.

What inspired you to create this work?

I’m quite interested in structures that are ordered and disordered at the same time – the idea that parts of a structure can become autonomous. In some ways the work is quite minimal and simple, but I think there’s complexity within the grid – a transformation within a repetitive structure. And I think this relates to office life: There is routine, but within that, individuality.

How have you enjoyed working with the architects, Squire and Partners, on the production of this work?

My background is painting; I’ve never really worked with stone before, so this has been a real collaboration. They’ve been a big help with selecting materials and overseeing production. The process makes me curious about how it will look at the end! That said, I’m very pleased with what I’ve seen so far.

Did 5 Hanover Square itself influence the work?

I came up with the idea after seeing renderings of the building. I was interested in the building’s repetitive structure. As an artist, I connect to the architectural framework of the grid; it provides a cognitive rhythm for me.

Do you hope that it will elicit a particular reaction from people?

I wouldn’t be an artist if I didn’t believe strongly in the power of art, but this work is an open sign – it doesn’t symbolize a certain thing, or have a certain message – and so it represents aesthetic freedom. I cannot overload it with meaning; that comes from perception. There are forms that you see and those that you don’t, so people’s responses will have a lot to do with the connections they make in their minds.

Esther Stocker's work

“I came up with this idea after seeing renderings of the building. As an artist, I connect to the [building’s] architectural framework.”