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Eisern Union – right into the studio

An exhibition project of the Economic Council of 1. FC Union e.V.

Torsten Schlüter, “UNIONGEN”, 2022, oil on canvas, 70 x 100 cm

Red and white ecstasy, a sea of flags and beer showers, the thunderous “Football God” after every name, the never-ending chants in the stands – every Union fan knows what that feels like. But can this feeling be transported in time and space?
Where descriptive words reach their limits, the realm of art begins. Torsten Schlüter has lived and worked in this realm for more than 30 years. He has succeeded in capturing on paper and canvas what we always say: “It can’t be described, you have to experience it.” And because art and artists are free, can disturb and disturb and are neither dependent on consensus nor are they even interested in creating one, they fit, no, they belong here in this very special place.
Welcome to 1. FC Union Berlin in the ballroom of the stadium An der Alten Försterei for “Torsten Schlüter: Eisern Union – bis ins Atelier”.

Christian Arbeit, Press Spokesman & Stadium Spokesman 1. FC Union Berlin

The flyer for the exhibition
can be downloaded here

the detailed press release
download here

Torsten Schlüter, “In front of the stadium”, 2021, charcoal on paper, 20 x 30 cm
Torsten Schlüter “Die Angriffsreihe”, 2001, acrylic on cardboard, 100 x 140 cm

From the Union magazine, February 2016

“The pulsating, beating heart” – in a series of ascension pictures, this is Torsten Schlüter’s key work. For the artist, the composition of red paint on white paper is the addition of everything that makes up Union: it symbolizes the twelfth man. “Our club is not defined by its players,” says Torsten clearly, “but by its fans.” Dajana Rubert and Frank Willmann visited the painter in his studios on Hiddensee and in Berlin. They were in the stadium with him and were able to immerse themselves in a mostly colorful world full of art and union.
In his studio in Berlin-Mitte, one work of art follows the next. Many sketches, over 5000 works, including countless paintings, drawings and sculptures. It is the collected life’s work of the 56-year-old. Or rather the part of it that is still in the artist’s possession. Torsten knows exactly where each of his works stands. And, of course, where the union cycle is located. He unerringly pulls one red and white picture after another from the shelves. In 2001, he made Union the subject of his works for the first time. “If something really ticks me off, then I turn it into art,” he says. An entire series was created back then. Under the motto: “Ascended!”
Torsten has been going to Union regularly since the 1990s. He stands on the back straight. Height baseline. Very close to the old ad house. “I’ve also been to other stadiums,” says the globetrotter, who has spent part of the winter in India for decades. “But then you arrive at Schalke, for example, and sit in this well-organized, hyper-modern arena. Or you’re in the Olympic Stadium. All those annoying chairs everywhere. You lose everything there. And as a guest, if you’re unlucky, you’ll be herded in like cattle. Plus the cheering crowd. Yes, of course there are real fans there too. But when you come back to your stadium at the Alte Försterei, where a lot of things still seem a bit improvised, you just think: Wonderful. Then you stumble over a root on your way through the forest. Great! Thank God I’m back here again!” Torsten raves about an iron world. His world.
(Dajana Rupert and Frank Willmann)

Interesting side note:
When Torsten Schlüter wrote his euphoric “Ascended” on the picture, it was 2001. And promotion to the second Bundesliga.

Torsten Schlüter, "The twelfth man, the fan block the beating heart of the club", 2001, acrylic on cardboard, 76x105cm
Torsten Schlüter, “Fanblock! (The beating heart of the club)”, 2001, acrylic on cardboard, 75 x 105 cm