• Probe 1 – The Story of Slovak (Post)Conceptual art
    12 Dec 2018 − 24 March 2019

    Prague City Gallery / Stone Bell House Curated by: Vlado Beskid and Jakub Král Loans by Kontakt: Ján Mančuška, Julius Koller, Stano Filko, Roman Ondak The exhibition will introduce Czech public into one of the crucial tendencies found in modern and contemporary Slovak art. It will focus on the origination and development of Conceptual and post-Conceptual Art within the horizon of the past fifty years in Slovakia, i.e. from the alternative, unofficial scene of the 1960s to the post-1989 legal artistic platform. The oeuvres of two generations of artists, such as Viktor Frešo, Jozef Jankovič, Anetta Mona Chisa & Lucia Tkáčová, Martin Kochan, Július Koller, Marek Kvetan, Ján Mančuška, Roman Ondák, Boris Ondreička, Monogramista T.D, Rudolf Sikora, Pavla Sceranková, Peter Rónai and Jaro Varga, will serve to present particular forms of Conceptual artistic morphology, as it was shaped by the new aesthetic criteria with their codes, in the context of time. The exhibition, held as a specific contribution to the celebrations of the 100th anniversary of the existence of Czechoslovakia, will go hand in hand with interventions by several Czech artists (Jan Brož, Alice Nikitinová, Vít Soukup, Pavel Sterec, Antonín Střížek, Michaela Thelenová) who will loosely contextualize selected historical, social, economic and world-view facets of our history. Their main subject of interest is the transformations of the internal social paradigm, presented the loss of the utopian outreach of our thinking in connection with the declining big ideologies.


Heinz Gappmayr

Heinz Gappmayr was among the artist-theoreticians whose texts and artworks have been focusing since the 1960s on the connections between the visual and linguistic production of meaning. His works aim to place words, concepts, and phrases on paper, canvases, and walls in such a way that their meaning also finds expression in their compositional arrangement—to make language visibly “do” what it “means”. But as there are always several possible ways of linking linguistic form and linguistic meaning, any belief in a single, immutable visual identity of language finally proves illusionary.

In Gappmayr’s work, above all terms of being, of becoming, and of passing away are “portrayed” in dynamic sequences of letters and words. Words signifying place are visualized by corresponding positioning within the pictorial field; geometrical forms and colors are represented by tautological or contradictory linguistic and symbolic equivalents.

When the concept “time” gets thinner and thinner from letter to letter, for example, then passing and vanishing as characteristics of time seem to be inscribed in the form of the concept itself. Or when, at the moment of looking at the picture, one sees the words “at this moment,” then perception and what is perceived coincide. Tautology is used here to make visible and draw attention to that which is usually overlooked. Here, self-reflexivity results in art that counters the internalization of language and in the ability to reflect on this internalization.



1925–2010, Innsbruck / AT

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