Dorit Margreiter

Since its earliest beginnings, the artistic project of Dorit Margreiter has been about dealing with modernity, with all its utopian promises, aesthetic legacies, and diverse narratives. Margreiter finds her themes where modernity has been reformulated and redefined, where its former potentials are absent, and where new forms and new sociopolitical spaces—in the broadest (including media-related) sense—have subsequently arisen. In her precise and subtle works, Margreiter examines functions and effects in the media, film, advertising, and consumer goods industries as modernity’s machines for change and with regard to their inherent myths. She follows this processual transformation while simultaneously grappling with associated present-day contexts and the new meanings with which they are charged. In this, an important aspect is that Margreiter’s description of her own work “emphasizes generative as well as reactive, productive rather than retrospective,” as Penelope Curtis points out.1 Margreiter’s artistic methodology therefore also corresponds structurally with the approach taken in her investigations: her work encompasses the genres of sculpture and architecture as well as the media of film, video, photography, and typography. She deals with historically diverse models: film is interlaced with architecture, such as in her works addressing modern architectural icons such as buildings in Los Angeles (some of cinematic fame), or in works pertaining to the pavilion by Josef Hoffmann in Venice as well as to present-day shopping malls and the architectural settings of television series. “Margreiter’s artistic project is genealogical in nature and at a remove from agendas that seek to identify, archeologically as it were, the origins of aesthetic modernism. In contrast to telological narratives, the artist charts a model of reconstruction that focuses on the effects of power revealed in the fabric of historical contingencies and conflicts…” (André Rottman2)





1 Penelope Curtis, “The Naming of Parts,” in Dorit Margreiter. Description, ed. Lynne Cooke, (Madrid: Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, 2011), p. 113. Exhibition catalog.

2 André Rottman, “The Artist as Toplogist”; in: ibid., p. 108-109.


1967, Wien / AT


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