THE TENTH SALZBURG ART PROJECT
Brigitte Kowanz - BEYOND RECALL
Manfred Wakolbinger - CONNECTION
Erwin Wurm - GURKEN
A Project by the Salzburg Foundation in cooperation with the Foundation for Art and Culture Bonn
>> 10th Salzburg Art Project
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In homage to the country hosting the Salzburg Art Project, three internationally-acclaimed Austrian artists have been invited to take part in the10th and final project: Brigitte Kowanz, Manfred Wakolbinger and Erwin Wurm. Having adopted fundamentally different artistic approaches, the three created autonomous works, which in juxtaposition forge a mutual tension. Taking as their common point of departure the encounter with the city of Salzburg, the works were especially created for public sites individually selected by each artist.
In previous years Anselm Kiefer, Mario Merz, Marina Abramovic, Markus Lüpertz, James Turrell, Stephan Balkenhol, Tony Cragg, Christian Boltanski and Jaume Plensa have each accepted the invitation from the Salzburg Foundation and, with their respective works, contributed to the foundation of Salzburg's "Walk of Modern Art".
by Brigitte Kowanz / at the Staatsbrücke
Based in Vienna, the artist Brigitte Kowanz (*1957) became known for her light installations which she executes in the form of spatial scenarios or as architectural "interventions". Since 1997 she has been engaged as professor at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna.
In her project entitled "Beyond Recall", installed at the the Salzburg Staatsbrücke (or State Bridge), she intervenes in the structure's architecture judiciously and strikingly in equal measure. Over the bases of the four bridgeheads Kowanz erects semi-transparent mirror-faced cubes containing neon-lit lettering.
"These illuminated characters between the mirrors are simultaneously space-forming elements and information carriers. The space created is without boundaries. Interior and exterior space coalesce. A simultaneity of space and time, lettering, image and sculpture is generated which can be experienced on a sensuous level", explains the artist.
by Manfred Wakolbinger/ at Rudolfskai
The photographer and sculptor Manfred Wakolbinger (*1952) occupies space with his organically-curved objects, which appear as beings from another world. His large-format sculptures made of stainless steel are initially designed on the computer before being executed sculpturally.
For the Salzburg Art Project Wakolbinger chose a site on the Rudolfskai, a quay between the old city wall and the River Salzach, which he conceives as a stage for his approximately 11-metre-long sculpture "Connection", which references the cultural self-identity of the city of Salzburg.
by Erwin Wurm / in front of the Furtwängler Park
Erwin Wurm (*1954) is the master of biting, off-beat humour. With his hallmark wit and irony, the artist retraces social and civilizational developments and, in so doing, interrogates the conventional concept of sculpture. The essential point of reference in Wurm's oeuvre - as evidenced, for example, in his work "Gurken" (or cucumbers), which he installed in front of the Furtwängler Park in Salzburg - is the human body, in all its multifaceted individuality.
"The fascination of the diversity of forms, which by virtue of their uniqueness are inexhaustible, is compelling. Although individually different, each cucumber is still immediately identifiable as a cucumber and generically classifiable as such...analogous to man," explains Erwin Wurm.
The cucumber as a banal and ubiquitous object presents an ironic image. Yet by scaling it up to the size of a human body and creating the impression that it is growing out of the tarmac, Wurm confers upon it an individuality and elevates it to the status of an art work. Having recently presented a self-portrait of himself in Salzburg's Museum of Modern Art as a "pickled cucumber", the artist leaves his work open to interpretation, hovering as it does between critical irony and playful teasing: for ultimately, don't we all feel in a bit of a pickle sometimes?
Prof. Dr. h.c. mult. Reinhold Würth
Sal. Oppenheim, Detecon
Foundation for Art and Culture in cooperatin with the Salzburg Foundation
Brandstätter Verlag, Wien (planned for January 2012)