English summaries November 17 - 30

Museum Gugging Adolf Wölfli.universum! 18.09.2014 – 01.03.2015 Houses collapsing, angels fighting By Nina Schedlmayer How many rooms does one need to present an oeuvre such as this in its entirety? Adolf Wölfli, presumably the first Art Brut artist, produced art, well, like mad: His fictitious autobiographical narration “Skt. Adolf-Riesen-Schöpfung” consists of 45 large notebooks and 16 exercise books, which include 25,000 pages as well as 1,600 illustrations and 1,600 collages. Daniel Baumann, curator of the exhibition at the Museum Gugging limited the presentation to 50 works, beginning in 1904 – a clever decision, since Wölfli’s art is rather redundant. His life’s work, which is divided into several series (among them “From cradle to grave” or “Geographic and Algebraic notebooks”), plays in a universe of which he considered himself the ruler. These worlds of fantasy from which a narration evolves are interspersed by columns of figures and neatly written text. The compositions exhibit a certain rigor, structured by ribbons and stripes that intertwine, intersect, form circles and ovals and in the midst of which one finds heads, masks, houses, snails, clocks, crosses, stars, gates, eyes and angel-like creatures – a never-ending flow of texts and images. His later works are shown in the last room (Trauer-Marsch – Funeral-March) - they consist of text and collaged elements – mainly newspaper clippings and advertisements: the photo of the funeral of a Habsburg monarch is next to an ad for coffee filters; ads for ladies underwear, silver cutlery, tea cookers and chocolate are also found in these works – however, compared to the visually stunning worlds of previous times they appear remarkably plain and shallow. Museum Gugging 3400 Gugging, Am Campus 2 Tel: +43 676 841181 200 Fax: +43-2243-87 087 382 email: gallery@gugging.org www.gugging.org Opening times: Tue – Sun: 10 - 17 hours Kerstin Engholm Galerie Constanze Ruhm / Emilien Awada – Panormais Paramount Paranormal 14.11.2014 – 10.01.2015 Breaking up cinematic structures By Reimar Stange Constanze Ruhm / Emilien Awada’s “Panoramas Paramount Paranormal” is one of the highlights among the exhibitions currently shown in Vienna. The presentation is not unproblematic, but this is what constitutes its quality. The problem is already announced in the exhibition’s four-paged instruction leaflet: the working approaches are characterised by their uncontrolled complexity whose associations are hardly understood. But it is precisely this complexity that protects the exhibition from being one-dimensional, something that is omnipresent these days, and not only in galleries. PPP shows photos and two short films. Both films are pre-versions for a planned longer film that narrates the story of a French film studio burned down in 1971 and the housing complex that had been constructed in its place. Also the photos refer to this story and its link to topics such as simulation, ghosts, casting, archive, birds, multilingualism, studio, film history. Thus, PPP is characterised by the typical moment of provisionality and the “open, not yet complete form of narration” (Ruhm). The film includes images of the newly constructed housing complex, the voice-over alludes to Hitchcock by recounting that “the birds did not return this year”. Subsequently, actresses appear, auditioning for the role of a ghost, recalling both to the film “Juilette ou la cle des songes”, 1952 by Marcel Carne and to Derridas work “Marx’s ghosts”, 1993. A scene from this film is collaged – it is staged in an artificial forest. This motive is one of the most important ones of the entire work, which questions the fictitiousness of reality at various levels – e.g. by introducing the studio where Godard produced “Une femme est une femme” in 1961. The film is set in the Parisian district of Porte Saint Denis and thus documents the location. The famous film scene, taking place in the striptease dancer’s apartment, was filmed in a studio, because shooting the film in the designated “real” apartment had not been permitted. Thanks to the intelligent conjunctions in PPP, “reality” and its “simulation” are repeatedly connected in parallel. The exhibition is a must! Kerstin Engholm Galerie 1040 Vienna, Schleimühlgasse 3 Tel: +43 1 585 73 37 Fax: +43 1 585 73 38 email: office@kerstinengholm.com www.kerstinengholm. com Opening times: Tue – Fri: 11 - 18, Sat: 12-16 hours Galerie Krobath Gerold Miller 19.11.2014 – 10.01.2015 In the eye of the artist By Susanne Rohringer For the first time in five years, the large painted objects created by the Berlin-born artist Gerold Miller are exhibited again in Vienna - in the Galerie Krobath. On the occasion of this exhibition, the artist constructed a model of the gallery rooms and designed ideas corresponding with the venue’s conditions. Upon entering the exhibition, there is an almost square picture object on one of the sidewalls. A matted black margin is set around the square-shaped core of black, shiny colour. The shiny coating mirrors the movements of the visitors walking around the exhibition. Thus, the viewer is seen in the “eye of the painting”. Gerold Miller’s work is based on the knowledge of old masters and he transposes these findings into his paintings. He mainly focuses on 20th century art. Ranging from Malevich to the colour-field paintings by Barnett Newman, Mark Rothko or Ellsworth Kelly – Miller’s main interest concentrates on painting-related problems, in particular, their reduction and solution. He cannot deny his sculptural background. The medium he uses is usually a square metal corpus, giving the colour a massive object-like foundation and thus more weight and meaning. In his most recent works in the series “Monoform”, presented at the Galerie Krobath, Miller shows that he is able to playfully break this up. To do so, he mounts two same-sized coloured aluminium ledges, thereby insinuating a painting. The ledges function as imaginative (painting) borders. One is tempted to hang a further painting onto the resulting void – a painting within a painting. In all, the exhibition is a convincing presentation of the artist’s most recent works. A colour intensive orange-red palette, seen just a few years ago in Nikolaus Ruzicska, is reduced to blue, white, grey and black. This intensifies and shadows the monochrome colour coating. The medium is almost made to disappear. Enjoy. Galerie Krobath 1010 Vienna, Eschenbachgasse 9 Tel: +43 1 585 74 70 Fax: +43 1 585 74 72 email: office@galeriekrobath.at www.galeriekrobath.at Opening times: Tue – Fri: 11 - 18, Sat: 11-15 hours Startgalerie im MUSA Maximilian Pramatarov – Bow / Lost 13.11. 2014 – 11.12. 2014 From aesthetic trash dumps to psychedelic forests By Wolfgang Pichler On the occasion of the Month of Photography, the Startgalerie im MUSA is showing Bow/Lost by Maximilian Pramatarov Maximilian Pramatarov primarily devotes his attention to the outskirts of modern metropolises, similar to the photographic tradition of Elfriede Mejchar and Gerd and Hilla Becher. Whether it is a junkyard or a somewhat unkempt, and all but idyllic forest area – found only in the outskirts of residential or industrial areas, and for which neither the municipal park authorities nor the landscape persevering farmers consider themselves responsible. The artist (born 1979) presents such areas and their distinctive character in a very individual way. In addition to the photos depicting London’s workers’ boroughs, reminiscent of Dan Graham’s pioneering work “Homes for America” (1967), three lenticular images are – due to their almost painterly quality – among the highlights. It remains unclear whether or not the psychedelic colour effects that have been worked into the otherwise rather quiet pictures insinuate more than just an effect. They definitely do not disturb the consistent overall impression – on the contrary, they ensure not to miss the irritating momentum. The aforementioned junkyard with its delicate pink heap of metal and its stringent composition is the absolute highlight of the exhibition and it clearly proves that no special effects are needed to deliver good photo art. A photographer’s special – and ideally, also aesthetically educated view, is the essential basis for good photos. And it isn’t relevant that not all works shown in this exhibition meet these high standards. Startgalerie im MUSA 1010 Vienna, Felderstrasse 6-8, next to the Town Hall www.musa.at Opening hours: Tue, Wed, Fri: 11 – 18 hours, Thu. 11 – 20 hours, Sat: 11 – 16 hours

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