Katharina Grosse, Ohne Titel, 2010 © Bildrecht, Wien, 2017. Photo by Sebastian Schobbert

Katharina Grosse in "Abstract Painting Now!" at The Kunsthalle Krems, Austria.

On view July 2 through November 5, 2017.

In Modernism, abstraction is regarded as one of the most significant formal articulations and is particularly linked to painting. The consistent analysis of the medium up to the zero point in the avant-garde of the 1910s followed a steady resurgence of non-representational painting, especially in abstract expressionism, in informal and minimal art Painting and the creative authority, which was countered with sensuality and intuition in the postmodern phase from the 1980s onwards.

The exhibition Abstract Painting Now! Will focus on the current international situation of the non-figurative panel painting with about sixty artistic positions and will fan out the wide field of a still significant painter's practice. The historical basis of the show is the development following Abstract Expressionism, which was supported above all by Gerhard Richter and Sigmar Polke. The former, after a period of agony, in which his gray colorings emerged, turned to the beautiful, seemingly expressive. The latter used abstraction as an ironic paraphrase, commenting on the veracity of the brush stroke as a mark of the artistic self. 

Deconstruction, criticism of the author, mix, quotation, and ornament are some of the essential parameters in the current abstract painting when Wade Guyton produces his minimalist stripe images from an inkjet printer. Katharina Grosse exchanges the classic brush against the airbrush gun and creates iridescent color fields. In modern painting, the ornament was seen as a crime, a useless slag of autonomous art. In the stylistic postmodern, it finds again in the abstraction with Ross Bleckner and Philip Taaffe a place. The extended concept of abstraction also includes nature and landscape in the form of necromantic-expressive color fields such as those of Per Kirkeby. At Sean Scully, constructive, geometrical and picturesque atmosphere are paired with a synthesis of ratio and emotion. Spirituality and geometric abstraction in the succession of Kasimir Malewitsch and Barnett Newman are essential criteria for Helmut Federle. In Brice Marden and Lee Ufan, the brush stroke as a sign of the meditative act saves the spiritual in art. This seriousness and concentration on the mind and image are also to be found in the monochrome paintings by Marcia Hafif, Joseph Marioni, and Günter Umberg.

In the 1980s, too, conceptual neo-metrical works by Ernst Caramelle, Gerwald Rockenschaub, and Heimo Zobernig, along with color field paintings by Erwin Bohatsch, Herbert Brandl, Hubert, were developed Scheibl and Walter Vopava. This is followed by recent positions in the exhibition that continue the abstraction project to the present day.


Kunsthalle Krems | T. +43.2732.908010
Franz-Zeller-Platz 3 | 3500 Krems an der Donau | Austria
Website: Kunsthalle Krems | Katharina Grosse