Alfred Hrdlicka - Fleischeslust
Vernissage: Thursday, 28th February 08, 7 p.m., the exhibition runs until 5th April 2008.
Alfred Hrdlicka (b.1928 in Vienna) - Austria's great sculptor and graphic artist celebrates his 80th birthday. Already before the time when Hrdlicka committed himself primarily to three-dimensional art, he was in contact with plastic structures, in the form of dental impressions made of gypsum, during his apprenticeship as a dental technician between 1942 and 1945. It was in 1944 - in other words before Hrdlicka obtained his formal training - that he created his first sculpture. Between 1946 and 1952 Hrdlicka studied painting with Guetersloh and Dobrowsky at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna. After obtaining his diploma in painting, Hrdlicka began to study sculpture with Wotruba, and he completed his studies at the Academy of Fine Arts in 1957. Hrdlicka instilled human life into the marble block, turning it into human flesh - a portrait of a man marked by destiny. Hrdlicka's credo was to return to reality. Hrdlicka is an artist who is close to the classical sculptors of the western world - ranging from Michelangelo to Rodin. He finds truth in ugliness and in pain, but not in beauty. The best-known sculpture in the context of human violence in the oeuvre of Alfred Hrdlicka is the multi-piece memorial monument in front of the Albertina museum/Vienna. His Mahnmal gegen Krieg und Faschismus (Memorial Monument against War and Fascism) was unveiled in 1988 and ultimately completed in 1991. The artist wants to stir the emotions of onlookers, he wants to attack them and urge them to reflect on violence and the flesh. Hrdlicka's art is always physical and mundane, driven by instincts, sexuality and violence. It does not belittle or embellish.