by Ana-Daniela Sultana
The first edition of ART VIENNA, held between 23 and 26 February 2017 at Leopold Museum in MuseumsQuartier made obvious, once again, the Viennese public’s predisposition to what is a somewhat safe art investment, well-advised, and established art, as quality was the self-confessed criterion for the selection of the artworks.
Unfolded on two floors, one displaying mainly modern and the other more contemporary art, the new show had a strong focus on Austrian, especially Viennese galleries. Regardless of its designation as international art fair, there were only 6 exhibitors from outside Austria (from a total of 34).
ART VIENNA. Photo courtesy of (c) stylearts.eu
The galleries on the ground floor featured, alongside international household names of classical modernism, renowned Austrian names such as Alfred Hrdlicka, Oswald Oberhuber, and Hermann Nitsch. The other part of the fair, dedicated primarily to contemporary art and located on the first underground floor of the museum, had its share of household names too: Damien Hirst, Andy Warhol, and Mr. Brainwash to name a few.
Albeit the mission of ART VIENNA isn’t to showcase essentially solo projects, a couple of artists who received particular attention are worth mentioning: André Verlon, Rudolf Goessl, Zoran Mušič, Nives Widauer, and Francisc Chiuariu. A special presentation of André Verlon’s work was organized by Kunsthandel Hieke (Vienna) on the occasion of the artist’s centenary, while Rudolf Goessl’s solo show set up by Galerie Jünger (Vienna) and Zoran Mušič’s special exhibition put on by Magnet Gallery (Vienna/Völkermarkt) concentrated on their creations from the 70s. If the works of the first three artists don’t really need any introduction in the local context, those of the later two - both born in the 60s - were maybe the seemly revelation of the new fair.
Nives Widauer’s solo show presented by OSME Gallery (Vienna) featured her new series “Seven human things“, whereas Francisc Chiuariu’s solo show organized by AnnArt Gallery (Bucharest) in collaboration with FIVE PLUS Art Gallery (Vienna) featured works from his most recent series “View From Above”.
Nives Widauer´s solo show at ART VIENNA. Photo courtesy of (c) stylearts.eu
The Swiss artist Nives Widauer lives and works in Vienna. She achieved significant acknowledgement through exhibitions held at Kunsthistorisches Museum, Belvedere, and Ausstellungshaus Spoerri. Her recent practice involves a mix of analogue and digital approaches in various media, which extend from painting to video installations and sculpture.
Francisc Chiuariu solo show at ART VIENNA. Photo courtesy of (c) stylearts.eu
Among Romania's leading contemporary artists, Francisc Chiuariu made his entrance on the Viennese scene few months ago with the above-mentioned series. He lives and works in Bucharest and is represented by AnnArt Gallery since 2011. His recent artistic practice consists of a unique combination of Hyperrealism and Expressionism, staging humans and angels, who coexist in abstract urban landscapes.
Video courtesy of (c) stylearts.eu