Thomas Feuerstein: Trickster

Exhibition catalogue, edited by Hans-Peter Wipplinger
texts (German/English) by Elisabeth Bronfen, Candyman, Gerhard J. Lischka, Astrid Mania and an interview ­between Sabeth ­Buchmann and Thomas Feuerstein
368 p with 250 coloured illustrations
280 x 215 mm, hardcover

ISBN 978-3-86442-031-3

48,00 €

TRICKSTER »has little to do with a classical notion of sculpture«

When Thomas Feuerstein (b. 1968) is asked about his exuberant work which features biology, literature, art history, philosophy, medicine, cybernetics, religion, sex, economics and mass media, and the ­impact of bio-politics on the in­dividual and the dream of eternal youth, he generally likes to respond with a literary statement. And the bold list of his work resembles complex literary theory about the real life all the more when he reacts with an adventurous story, for example »Plus ultra. Das Herkulesprojekt«. In this story, Thomas Feuerstein describes the boxer, magazine editor, Dada­ist and dandy, Arthur Cravan and thus focuses upon a personality from the 1920s, who more recently, some 60 years later, has stalked idol-like through the history of Pop and has, as it were, fed the myth of the anarchic anti-hero. This literary image is a mere parable for Feuerstein’s model of machines and bioreactors, with which art is produced in very ­classical sense, for example with »écriture automatique« borrowed from the surrealists, which in his case is based upon fluctuations in the exchange rate. Alongside this, the organic depicts enzymes and catalysts, molecular sculptures and thus a processuality leading to the kind of manifestos that  can only exist in the history of art. His concept of form, as the artist points out, »has little to do with a classical notion of sculpture. The material, together with its molecular structure and the ­associated processes and transformations play a specific role. I do not see it as a form of counter-­concept to matter, but as a structure, which may take on various forms and figurations.«

Kunsthalle Krems, 18/11/2012–10/2/2013