(Re)connect to the Public Sphere
Artists: Iris Andraschek, Hubert Lobnig, the artist group Gelitin, Werner Reiterer, Anna Mayer, Franz Kapfer
Opening: Friday, 11th of May, 7 pm
Exhibition open from May 11 till May 30
The exhibition of 5 artistic positions from Austria shown in Tirana’s Zeta Gallery in spring 2018 will focus on public space. Investigating the relations between people and the public sphere in Tirana is an exciting challenge. Artists Iris Andraschek and Hubert Lobig picked colleagues who work both in art spaces as well as in public areas, and whose works often refer to discourses concerning public space.
Their works deal with topics such as national emblems and structures, democracy, individualism and collectivism, neoliberal developments and the privatisation of public space, consumption, etc.
The artist group Gelitin, for instance, unveiled a monument in 2014 that has a quite ironic way of picking up on an important element of physiognomy that historically was frequently used to attribute nationality or “race” – the nose.
“The WachauerNase(Nose) resides by the Danube at the ferry stop in Sankt Lorenz opposite Weißenkirchen / Wachau. It looks as if a giant was buried underground, with only his nose poking out. The nostrils are big enough for people to enter. It is the most beautiful nose in the whole of Wachau, and all winegrowers wish it was theirs.“ – Gelitin
Werner Reiterer has realised numerous works in public space, the operating principles of which he has often questioned in them in a caricaturing manner. The drawings that precede his plastic works, installations and works in public space constitute the framework for actual realisations, ideas that cannot be carried out, pure fantasies, and fictions. What is fascinating about this is the range that forms between the drawings, his artistic work and the real world.
In her work as a painter, Anna Mayer addresses various discourses concerning public space and its utilisation – surveillance, privatisation, consumption, speculation, … For her installation objects, she uses multiple displays in which she spatialises her painting – sometimes in a very large format and sometimes on a very detailed level – as flags, banners, transparent plates, or in architectural models.
Iris Andraschek and Hubert Lobnig have carried out numerous temporary and permanent projects and site-specific works in public space. Their focus is on political subjects, such as recent European demarcations, the representation of women in public areas, or rural public space.
Franz Kapfer has been devoting himself to public and representative set pieces of state and church for years. Remakes of elements like flags, crests, monuments or figures of saints play a part in this, just like the bollards that regulate and direct the movements of vehicles and people.
Hubert Lobnig, 2017