Art Cologne 2017
Three of the most prominent representatives of Austrian post-War art are the focus of a joint presentation by Galerie Dierking, Zurich and Galerie Thomas Salis, Salzburg at this year's international market Art Cologne.
On display are selected works by Hans Bischoffshausen, Karl Prantl and Arnulf Rainer: "What links them – beyond the boundaries of their extremely diverse artistic languages as painter, graphic artist or sculptor – is the search for a radical new beginning in art, and thus for new artistic forms of expression", explain gallerists Dierk Dierking and Thomas Salis. "For these artists born in the 1920s, an art unencumbered by the past was marked equally by an extremely reduced formal vocabulary, autonomy of colour and a minimalist choice of materials."
This first joint exhibition by the three important Austrian avant-garde artists demonstrates the place taken by their country's art within the overall European development of abstract, expressive or informel trends. Promoted by the legendary Viennese Galerie nächst St. Stephan, Bischoffshausen, Prantl and Rainer all maintained active contact with the international avant-garde in Germany, Italy and France.
A productive exchange of ideas with artists including Lucio Fontana, Yves Klein and Piero Manzoni led to a clear expansion of the concept of art in Austria.
Never before has a joint exhibition offered the opportunity of viewing, and thus of comparing, these three artists, whose influence on the art world extended far beyond their national borders. Whereas Bischoffshausen and Prantl, with their abstract pictures and sculptures, sought forms of expression based on the Zen-like aesthetic of stillness and meditation, Rainer's strength, by stark contrast, lies in expressive force and corporeality.