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Mounting a joint exhibition of two artists in a single gallery space can be a risky endeavour on more than one level – both in terms of the compatibility of the artistic stances and of the artists’ willingness to collaborate on such a project. kunstraum arcade resolved to take on that challenge in this year’s cooperative exhibition between AIR – ARTIST IN RESIDENCE Niederösterreich and kunstraumarcade Mödling. AIR Niederösterreich suggested inviting the German artist Susann Dietrich, who spent August and September in Krems as an artist in residence. Helga Cmelka for her part proposed the Vienna-based artist Aurelia Gratzer.

Susann Dietrich (*1984 in Weißenfels, Germany) works in the sphere of photography. She focuses on exploring objects and structures and developing a conceptual presentation of her work in three-dimensional space. Her very diverse oeuvre is dedicated to the relationship between light and darkness. Currently, Susann Dietrich is exploring the “alchemy of light”. The exhibition showcases a range of visual and sculptural pieces, in which the artist investigates the pictorial potential of light and shade using a differentiated spectrum of greys.

Aurelia Gratzer (*1978 in Hartberg, A). At first glance, the paintings of Aurelia Gratzer seem to be a closed system of surfaces, lines and structures. The compacted configuration of construction and painting is the purified result of the artist having surpassed given spatial systems of reference or her memory of these. Gratzer torpedoes the viewer's urge to mentally round out and complete the composition; the underlying compositional order, which seems to be utterly clear, is rendered unclear in order to clarify the painterly aspects.

Both artists met this challenge of cooperation with gusto and great open-mindedness. Their approach was marked by mutual respect and appreciation, making the collaboration easy and free of snags (a bit like the “virtually boneless” quality of fish fillets that the German title of the exhibition alludes to). From the first meeting at kunstraum arcade it became obvious that a curator is not really needed here. Both artists immediately understood the space and developed the concept for the exhibition in completely relaxed harmony – serendipity at its best. Let’s hope that also goes for the viewers, who might discover totally surprising links, dialogues and juxtapositions, in this joint presentation of two artistic stances that explore – each in their own differing ways – the terms and conditions of three-dimensional space.

Andreas Hoffer

 

Copyright Picture
Abb. li.: Aurelia Gratzer (A) ›Serpens‹, 2015
Abb. re.: Sausann Dietrich (D) ›Der Schmetterling und das Licht‹ (Nr. 14 von 15), 2014

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