Galería Ehrhardt Flórez


  • Otto Zitko
  • Herbert Brandl

Otto Zitko / Herbert Brandl

27/01/2006 - 25/03/2006
Herbert Brandl, Otto Zitko (2006), installation view.
Herbert Brandl, Otto Zitko (2006), installation view.
Herbert Brandl, Otto Zitko (2006), installation view.
Herbert Brandl, Otto Zitko (2006), installation view.

Since the late 1990s, the Heinrich Ehrhardt Gallery has held several individual exhibitions of these two artists in Madrid. Austria being the country invited to ARCO 2006, this double presentation of the painters who, at present, stand out the most in Austria, within their generation, has been prepared. The collaboration between the two is the result of a long tradition of institutional collaborations, such as the “Uncommon Denominator” exhibition at MASSMOCA, Massachusetts 2002, and the current “China Retour” at MUMOK in Vienna.

Herbert Brandl was born in Graz in 1959. His painting has its roots, like that of numerous German painters of his generation, in expressionism, in this case in its Austrian “version”, such as that of Richard Gertl, Egon Schiele and Oskar Kokoschka, all of them arousing intense interest again in the 1980s in Vienna. His first works, still material, take from Gertl his concentric movements, sometimes abruptly interrupted in his gesture. Then, his painting unfolds more and more, the strokes cross the canvas from one side to the other, the first strokes appear as if to make the surface of the canvas lose its support. The particularity of his works is the attempt to catch the light in a soft and open web of painting. The painting is never fixed, even if it has a priori all the elements to read it. We are as if immersed in the landscape, where the eye and the body in movement, redefine each displacement of the image that we have, Brandl’s painting is existential, it does not infringe the necessary relationship between the plot of reality, lived by the painter , and chance in the creation process. There is always an event, a perception, a sensation at the origin of his paintings, even if the indecisive abstraction they present does not allow the origin of him to be identified.

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Otto Zitko, born in 1959 in Linz, studied at the Higher School of Applied Arts with Peter Weibel. In the 1980s, he was part of the group of emerging Viennese artists, along with Herbert Brandl and Franz West, among others, who sought a new self-definition by differentiating themselves from the powerful Viennese actionism of the 1960s. Initially starting from a wild expressionism, Zitko gave a change radical in the late 1980s, replacing the traditional support of the canvas with materials such as glass and aluminium. The line will be defined as the unique element of his painting; “the long path of the line” as the title of one of his works indicates. Zitko will develop a calligraphy that combines all influences from Viennese Actionism, the Informalism of WOls and Matthieu, Pollock’s painting to the Gutai group in Japan. His pictorial graphics arise from his body, from his dimension, his psychomotor movement and his sensitivity. The world he creates is an extension of his own body, created from a pictorial thought that allows the body and the world to converge in a single circle.

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