Painting is constant self-knowledge and the Hare is world bridger

„Everyone is an artist“ and everything is art, one can argue anthroposophically in the sense of Joseph Beuys, who declared the dead hare to be art in 1965 and crowned it a symbol of freedom in 1982. But the point is different. In order to remain true to one‘s own being and that of art, education, dedication, leisure, talent in the classical sense, and constant self-examination are required in order to recognize this unity in the whole. In order to experience it and thus expand the concept of art, it is advisable to look at Beuys‘ entire statement. Thus, every human being „on the way to the form of freedom of the social organism“ is an artist. Everyone carries the potential within himself and is always creative on the way to himself as a being. Every being is artist in this sense, with it the moment of the creation is meant, which lives in everything, also in the hare and in the dead hare.

The attempt to assign the individual paintings or the oevre to a style period ultimately leads one again and again to the painting of Tina Oelker. She is avant-garde in the classical sense. The work of 1000 Hares is unique in the art world due to the concept in its abundance and the reference to the essence of painting itself. As a child of the 70s, the artist has almost no choice but to go through all the art movements of the 20th and 21st centuries to free herself from precisely that. Looking at the hares chronologically, this process becomes clearly visible. A self-definition requires demarcation and at the same time a concentrated openness for allowing one‘s own ductus.

It was to take at least three and a half years to complete the work (Tageshase # 0001, December 2014). In contrast to serial art, the principle of repetition applies with the prerequisite of the uniqueness of each individual painting. By limiting the motif and format, painting is allowed to unfold freely within this clearly defined scope. Boundaries become perceptible and painting is thrown back on itself. By detaching itself from the motif again and again, she manages to constantly create new variations in this format. The impression of self-evidence, familiarity and lightness is well thought out concept.

The format 23,6 x 15,7 x 2 in creates in the juxtaposition the impression of a mirror at eye level, resembles in the series an ancestral series and stands in the objecthood at the same time for itself also alone. Colouring and composition entice, conspicuously visible in the first hundred to two hundred paintings, initially somewhat louder in their power of colour and immediacy. The alternation between figuration and abstraction becomes more and more evident in the subsequent paintings. This pendulum movement becomes faster and increasingly intense, until it does not matter whether the mere assertion of the series affiliation makes the viewer see a hare or the real intention through painting. Now Everything is Hare.

Looking at the radiance of the entire work, an implosion of each individual picture comes to light. The single picture with the intention of a thousand makes prematureness seem, however, the hare with the persistent and steady pace of painting reaches its goal after seven years and shows its interned potential in every form. The calculated time of three and a half years is stretched, the format blown up after six hundred paintings, the materiality expanded. The drawing as the basis for painting, the intuitive and purposeful stroke always strong enough to be Hare.


My name is _______, what do I know
I know - already I‘m gone again.
Hamburg, June 27, 2016


A chronology of the 1000 Hares in the eternal timelessness

As a double sagittarius born in Westphalia in the 70s, bustleling was already a matter of freedom. That the hare is not a rabbit, the game remains free by nature, was already clear to her as a child and was later to be emphasized 1000 times. The schools in the 80s well overcome, then in the company of real masters of colour, form and abstraction, came in the mid-90s in New York City the encounter with the bronze hare of Barry Flanagan a native feedback.

The fall of the towers in 2001 gave the necessary push to actually explore the animal in its natural and symbolic power. The hunt for the hare was, as it were, a self-sacrifice with the goal of defining oneself as a complete being in art.

Initially wild on check fabric, as it were traditional, Tina Oelker painted her first hare portrait on tablecloth as a modern trophy in 2001. She replenishing and had volunteers in hare and hunting costumes chase and photograph themselves through the forest. In 2003, the „Schützenfest“ (marksmen´s festival) was celebrated with 1000 day hunting licenses in the Milchstraße in Hamburg and shortly after she graduated.

During one of exclusively in that zodiac sign born exhibition and „Schützenfest“ in the Soester Börde (Westphalia), it came Oelker 2006 with the Jägermeister in the head shot. Interpreted as a snap idea and initially postponed out of respect for this great task, it happened again in 2007 that in her exhibition of monthly hares in the „Speicherstadt“ (Warehouse City) she said it out loud with certainty and witnesses: „I will make 1000 Hares.“

Am 1. Dezember 2007 begann sie mit dem Tageshasen # 0001. Zu Ostern 2008 waren 100 Hasen gemalt. Die Rahmen von Hand auf Gehrung gesägt, die Leinwand dreifach grundiert und im gleichen Maß Hasenportraits in Öl.

On December 1, 2007, she started with the day hare # 0001. By Easter 2008, 100 hares were painted. The frames mitered by hand, the canvas primed three times and in the same measure hare portraits in oil.

After 600 hares, the format was blown up and larger oil paintings and smaller formats on paper and fur followed. The „Hasenmanufaktur“ (Hare Manufactory) and the day hare # 1000 was completed with the „Schützenfest Reloaded“ in December 2014. The hares are since then refurbished, supplemented and selectively exhibited.

Selected originals are still available for purchase with the „hare certificate“. This ensures that to a total exhibition of the 1000 Hares the individual originals are made available as a loan.


  • 1981 Hares are not rabbits
  • 1990 Hare with olives in Portofino, Italy
  • 1994 The analog photo of Barry Flanagan‘s bronze hare in NYC
  • 1998 Karoviertel, Hamburg
  • 2001 Hare on checked fabric
  • 2003 Hare Leporello (lyrics)
  • 2003 Hunting poem | Game remains wild until you cook it.
  • 2003 Shooting party at Milchstrasse 21 A, Hamburg
  • 2004 Diploma | Auf Hasenjagd, The hare as a motif in art and culture
  • 2006 „Schützenfest“ (markmen´s festival) in the Soester Boerde
  • 2007 Monthly Hare in the Speicherstadt, Hamburg
  • 2007 Day hare # 0001 + hare certificate
  • 2008 On hare hunt, book publication
  • 2009 City hare, collages, editions
  • 2009 City Hare, Hamburg, short film
  • 2009 City Hare, London, short film
  • 2009 New York City Hare, short film
  • 2009 Celebration of Hare # 0250 at Rialto, Hamburg
  • 2010 Munich City Hare, short film
  • 2010 „Hasenmanufaktur“ (Hare Manufactory) Hamburg, Hafentor 7
  • 2014 The Leporello, New York City, short film
  • 2014 Schützenfest-Reloaded, festival and short film
  • 2014 Day Hare # 1000
  • 2016 Hare is the point.
  • 2017 Do you hare, Mrs. Oelker?
  • 2018 The world is a pineapple, and a hare lives in it.
  • 2020 1st edition
  • 2021 The book of Hares and Gods
  • 2021 2nd edition
  • 2023 3rd Edition