Hans Bischoffshausen (1927 - 1987)

Hans Bischoffshausen, known above all for his monochrome structures, is one of Austria’s most important avant-garde artists. Following his architectural studies, he "plunged" into painting in the mid-1950s, initially taking his cue from role models of classical modernism, such as Paul Klee or Hans Arp. The Joanneum award for contemporary painting, which he received in Graz in 1959, enabled him to move to Paris. The following twelve years in Paris are considered as his most important creative period. He researched into monochrome structures in white on white, seeing monochromy as a manifestation of light forming a unity with energy and matter. At the same time, with his "papiers sculptés", he gradually approached the limits of what is visible.

Through his friendship with Lucio Fontana, Bischoffshausen gained access to an international circle of artists which may be regarded as the role model for the German ZERO movement. In the 1960s, Bischoffshausen participated in several exhibitions that took the ZERO ideas to other countries (e.g. in Venice or The Hague).

Parallel to painting, the artistic and cultural "nonconformist" published the magazine Bischoffshausen und die Kultur, in which he wrote texts dealing critically with the structure of the cultural scene. The subject of silence as a spatial quality kept him occupied during his final working years. From 1972 onwards, the gradual deterioration of an optic nerve affected his artistic work.

1927 Born in Feld am See, Carinthia, Austria

 

1947 Architectural studies at the TH Graz

 

Mid 50ies "Plunge" into painting

 

1959 1st Joanneum award for contemporary painting, Graz

 

1959 - 1971 Resident in Paris

 

1960 Award from the Gesellschaft der Freunde zeitgenössischer Kunst (friends of contemporay art), (Secession, Vienna)

 

1961 Peak of monochrome structural reliefs

 

1962 Beginning of Apparition Series

 

1964 First edition of the magazine Bischoffshausen und die Kultur

 

1969 Final edition of the magazine Bischoffshausen und die Kultur

 

1972 Beginning of a gradual destruction of an optic nerve

 

1973 Serial material pictures

 

from 1977 Blind – late works with and on paper

 

1977 - 1987 Project "Stille (silence)" together with Gerhard Lojen, Gruppe 77

 

1987 Died in Villach, Carinthia, Austria

 

1957 Hans Bischoffshausen, Galleria del Cavallino, Venice


           Art d’aujourd‘hui en Autriche, Galerie Arnaud, Paris

 

1958 Gruppe, Galerie nächst St. Stephan, Vienna

 

1960 Summer exhibition, Galerie Iris Clert, Paris

 

1965 Participation in the exhibition by the ZERO avant-garde in Venice and Milan

 

1966 Participation in the exhibition by the ZERO avant-garde in Den Haag and Rotterdam

 

           Austrian Abstracts, East Side Gallery, New York

 

           Weiss auf Weiss, Kunsthalle Bern

 

1977 Retrospective at the Kärntner Landesgalerie, Klagenfurt

 

1987 Hans Bischoffshausen 1927–1987, Stadtmuseum Graz

1994 Museum für Moderne und Zeitgenössische Kunst, Bolzano, Italy

 

2004 Eremiten Kosmopoliten. Moderne Malerei in Kärnten 1900–1955, Carinthian Museum of Modern Art, Klagenfurt

 

2012 Retrospective at Schloss Wolfsberg, Kärnten

 

2013 "Hans Bischoffshausen. Paris und Zero (Werke der 1950er und 1960er Jahre), Galerie Dierking, Cologne

 

2015 Group show “ZERO – The International Art Movement of the 50ies and 60ies“, Martin-Gropius Bau, Berlin

           Group show “ZERO – Let Us Explore the Stars“, Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam

 

2015 - 2016 More than ZERO. Hans Bischoffshausen, Museum Schloss Belvedere, Orangerie, Vienna

 

2016 Group show „Cut, Folded, Pressed & Other Actions“, David Zwirner, New York

 

2016 Art after 1945 - 1968, Zentrum für Kunst und Medien, Karlsruhe