Christine Koenig Galerie
Schleifmuehlgasse 1A
0043 15857474
Johanna Kandl
dal 19/11/2002 al 18/1/2003
Segnalato da

Christine König


Johanna Kandl

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Johanna Kandl

Christine Koenig Galerie, Wien

In this, Johanna Kandl's first solo exhibition at the gallery, new large-scale works are being shown ­together with original cut-outs from regional newspapers ­on a coloured display made of plastic awnings, of the kind familiar from market booths.

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Opening: 20th November, 7.00-9.00 p.m. Exhibition showing until 18th January 03

Johanna Kandl, born in Vienna in 1954, studied painting and restoration at the Academies of Fine Art in Vienna and Belgrade. Numerous travels and longer sojourns in conjunction with various artistic and curatorial projects in Eastern Europe and in the former Soviet Union: Georgia, Azerbaijan, Ukraine, Russia, Poland, Romania, Lithuania, the former Republic of Yugoslavia and the Czech Republic. Solo exhibitions: Kunstverein Ulm (2003); Galerie für Zeitgenössische Kunst, Leipzig (2002); Fotohof Salzburg (2001); Secession, Vienna (1999/2000). Participation in the group shows: ŒPainting on the Move', Kunsthalle Basel (2002); ŒUncommon Denominator', MassMOCA, North Adams, USA (2002/03); Œ(un)gemalt', Sammlung Essl, Klosterneuburg (2002); ŒMia san mia', Generali Foundation, Vienna (2001); ŒDesire', Ursula Blickle Stiftung, Kraichtal (2001). Work in public spaces in co-operation with Œmuseum in progress' and Der Standard (2000/2001).

In this, Johanna Kandl's first solo exhibition at the gallery, new large-scale works are being shown ­ together with original cut-outs from regional newspapers ­ on a coloured display made of plastic awnings, of the kind familiar from market booths. The sources of her pictures are photographs from travelling or transregional projects involving people living behind and in front of the former ŒIron Curtain'. The increasingly perfect and lucid manner of her painting of the past few years has been achieved by employing the rare technique of egg tempera on wood. "The deceleration effect achieved through the attitude of Œkeep on painting' turns the original snapshot into a history picture, or at least into a genre scene." ( Borchardt-Bierbaumer). Inserted written quotes from specialist books for managers or from international business magazines place the pictorial content in an ironical state of suspension that both touches and rouses one.

Since the political and economic opening-up of Eastern Europe, a wildly proliferating Œfree zone' has developed between Austria and the Czech Republic, one which obeys its own laws and rules. On the Czech side, Vietnamese traders sell carvings, electrical goods and Gucci and Prada fakes. "This free zone could be anywhere, the pictures of these markets are the same all over the world. How many million people live from this kind of small-scale economy? WE HAVE ALREADY ACHIEVED EXPANDING MARKETS is what these small-time traders seem to be saying, yet paradoxically they are not interesting for the business gazettes, although it is precisely microcosms such as this which reflect global processes." ( J. Kandl). Another picture, IT´S THE ECONOMY, STUPID, shows a relief at the University of Leipzig, in front of which is a market stall with T-shirts and handbags and two stallholders engaged in discussion.... Incidentally, the title of the exhibition KÄMPFER FÜRS GLÜCK (ŒFighters for Happiness') is the title of a song by a youth band from the former GDR. But the right to happiness is also anchored in the American constitution as one of the citizens' fundamental rights. And, in one way or another, all the people in Johanna Kandl's pictures are FIGHTERS FOR HAPPINESS.

In the image: 'modernize or die...', 2002.

late night opening every Tuesday: until 12 pm.

"stuff from LA and other places":

For the season 2002 / 2003 the Californian video artist SKIP ARNOLD has put together a nocturnal programme which passers-by can view in the window of the gallery. The videos are by artists from Los Angeles and its environs and were specially selected by Skip Arnold for this occasion. They are all silent videos and will change on a weekly basis.
"When asked to organize this program, I thought WHAT would I want to see? And for me it became landscape and not really repetition like mondane but more like the mondane becomes the action which is repetition ­ like masturbation or maybe like taking a walk. So the works that I have been collecting are various views of landscape and repetition. And when I say landscape I mean it in the broadest sense of the word." (quot.Skip Arnold)

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