December 10 - 17

Galerie im Taxispalais: Heidrun Holzfeind - Mexico, Katerina Sedá Grandma, please come In the context of the Innsbruck Premierentage, the Galerie im Taxispalais has opened a dual presentation and thereby underlining its competence of reflecting contemporary art on a national and international level. Youth, femininity and considerable conceptual and formal differences characterize this exhibit. Mexico City is in the centre of Heidrun Holzfeind`s attention. In her slide installation "C.U." the Austrian artist shows the Campus of UNAM (Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México) from two different perspectives: as the architectural world heritage site built in the early 50s and icon of Latin American urban development, and also as the arena and origin of the student protests, which were beaten down violently by the military shortly before the Olympic Games were opened in 1968. "Mexico 1968" presents interviews with the former protagonists of the protest movement, broadened by two series of drawings and sculptures. Katerina Sedá is able to surpass Holzfeind`s documentary by applying unspectacular but clever interventions and takes over the directing. She apprehends the scope that art has on life (or vice versa). In her project "Kazdej pes, jiná ves" (A different village for every dog 2007), which was partly shown at this year`s documenta, Sedá exposes the miserable social structures existing in the high density housing area Nova Lísen in her home town of Brno-Lísen. She disseminated one thousand shirts with a pastel coloured print of Nova Lísen to one thousand inhabitants of the complex, each package marked with a different family as the sender. The reaction to this and the formalistic diagrams are part of her installation. The project "Nothing matters" (2005-2007) was initiated by the fact that her own grandmother was tired of living. It was a kind of occupational therapy against the lethargy that had afflicted the old woman. Katerina Sedá asked her grandmother to make drawings of those objects that she had sold while she was still working in the hardware store. And in the sequel "Vnucka" (Granddaughter, 2006 - 2007) she asks her do little chores, like writing a postcard. Jana Sedá wrote to her dog: "I am well and I love you". (6020 Innsbruck, Maria-Theresien-Str. 45 until 20. January 2008) www.galerieimtaxispalais.at Haus der Kunst: Robin Rohde. Walk off Asphalt-Dreams Always on the road. Even if Robin Rhode`s artwork is displayed in museums, the origin of his inspiration always comes into play: the street and the constant motion of its unprotected universe. Not matter if it is the hastily painted picture of an apparitional car, in which he attempts to break in ("Car Theft, 2003), or the photo series "Juggla" (2007), which gives the illusion of seeing a juggler playing with painted balls (similar to the Muybridge-style of capturing motion in sequences): Rhode`s work can be seen as abstract art with a sub cultural flair. Rhodes, born 1976 in Johannesburg, opens an enchanting imaginary dimension by filling his work with delicate magic. Rhode explains that the origin of this procedure was an old school ritual that he himself had experienced: the younger students were forced to interact with objects painted on walls. The artist is capable of sublimating this aggressive aspect and transforms it into a form of powerful imagination. Lately he has been working with objects in which the individual material used is of great relevance: a golden spade, a bicycle made of green soap or glass bottles growing out of a beer crate like flowers. While these objects as well as the performance "Frequency" (2007) were especially designed for the exhibit in Munich, they were not as convincing as his photo series and his animated films. Their happiness and joy are capable of casting a spell over the audience. "Horse" (2002) shows a chalk sketch of a seesaw painted onto the sidewalk with happy children on it that are swinging up and down. But they are actually lying on the ground and were photographed from a birds-eye perspective. The traces of the sketched variations stay visible - similar to Kentridge`s work. In "Harvest" (2005) Rhode creates marvellously impressive lights by simply spraying white dots onto a black background. Robin Rhode's work is characterized by a "daydream"-like quality, which gives him a significant standing over and above his provenance. (80538 Munich, Prinzregentenstrasse 1, until 6. January 2008) www.hausderkunst.de Lentos Kunstmuseum Linz: Projection Silent Drama On weekdays the Lentos Museum, unless hordes of school children are on an excursion, seems immersed in introspective silence: a good thing for visitors who want to enjoy the exhibits in a quiet atmosphere, but a bad thing for the visitor-statistics of the museum. There are currently four highly recommendable presentations to be seen - a Haus-Rucker-Retrospective, an exhibit by the Otto-Mauer award winner Ursula Mayer, a fascinating new set-up of the collection undertaken by artists and the exhibit "Projection", curated by Susanne Neubauer (Kunstmuseum Luzern), which mainly consists of slide projections. In the subdued atmosphere one can occasionally hear a clicking sound and then you can listen to VALIE EXPORT`S voice - in her performance "Cutting", showing Peter Weibel as a projection screen, and the buzzing of work "Son et Lumière" (Le rayon vert) by Peter Fischli / David Weiss - a plastic cup illuminated by a flashlight is rotating on a record and thereby conjures soft figments against the wall. Next to it photos by Fischli / Weiss, on which traces of light made by a Surrlis (Swiss German for: spinning top) are arranged in perfectly circular patterns. Other art works are involved with the media itself, such as Dan Grahams "Project for a slide projector": photos of a mirroring glass cube are projected on top of each other in such a way that they form a perspective image - which turns out to be a deceiving construction; or, a little less exciting, Ryan Gander and his masked slides, and more declamatory, Cornelia Parker, who throws dust (allegedly from Sigmund Freud`s couch) against the wall. In Paul Chan`s church-window projection people are falling from the sky. These charged art works bestow a sudden dramatic moment to the silence in the exhibit room - immediately bringing up nightmarish memories of 9/11. But one does wish the Lentos more visitors in the future. (4020 Linz, Ernst-Koref-Promenade 1, until 13. Janaury 2008) www.lentos.at Württembergischer Kunstverein & Staatsgalerie Stuttgart: Stan Douglas - Past Imperfect, Works 1986 - 2007 204.023 variations and 157 hours The prime time of art societies is over. The bourgeoisie - once giving these societies significance - now shows off sitting in classy cars. The job descriptions for their directors consist exclusively of those premises presented in Munich by Helmut Draxler 15 years ago. In the light of all this it is surprising how the Kunstervein combines all of its resources, considering the fact that it is the largest one art society of all. And it has also taken the Staatsgalerie on board, which not too long ago had 2 million visitors per year, and now struggles under a new administration and its extensive reconstruction projects. Stan Douglas, the Canadian video man, presents his work as nothing but a retrospective in this huge exhibit space. Douglas, born 1960, is nothing but an artist-artist, who coordinates the genuine interest in formalities with encyclopaedic education from a meta-level. In 1986 Douglas created "Overture" in which he uses three film sequences from the early days of cinematography, combines them one after the other and adds a reading of Prousts "In Search of Lost Time" which is twice as long as the visual sequence. Douglas attempts to offer a combinatory analysis as well as asynchronous moments, found footage and film history, permutation and the perspective that everything might come together sometime, somewhere in the future. He also shows a propensity to slow motion, static states, questioning movies and quoting literature. One needs time for Douglas` universe. The question creeps up if one should consider the prospect (made in his later works) of "204. 023 variations" between the frame rates and the dialog and the "157 hours of running time" that the visual and the acoustic motives need to melt together again, are meant to be a warning or an attribute. Art is generally known to be a promise for happiness. Sometimes the promise that it will come to an end is sufficient. (70173 Stuttgart, Schlossplatz 2, Konrad-Adenauer Str. 30 - 32, until 6. January 2008) Württembergischer Kunstverein www.wkv-stuttgart.de Staatgalerie Stuttgart www.staatsgalerie.de

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