From 2016 to 2018 the window gallery Schaufenstergalerie SCHARF at Stubenberggasse was organized and curated by contemporary collective graz. Schaufenstergalerie SCHARF questioned the White Cube per se. Art oscillated between the urban structure and the gallery space. Zwischen urbanem Stadtgefüge und Galerieraum oszillierend entstand Kunst. With the curation of Schaufenstergalerie SCHARF, the contemporary collective graz set itself the goal of reflecting on different socio-political and sometimes precarious themes within exhibition projects that oscillated between event and work.
Within three years 16 exhibitions with 23 artists and cooperations with esc medien kunst labor, galerie GALERIE, Ludwig Boltzmann–Institut für Kriegsfolgenforschung and with Kunstverein Roter Keil took place there.
Im NOTFALL – Scheibe HIER einschlagen
“In case of EMERGENCY – slice HERE”
Mário José Santos Soares and Philipp Strohmaier
14th of December 2016 – 28th of February 2017
Fire emergency boxes were collected, dipped in the collective’s namesake color, refilled by various artists of the association, and reassembled in public space. Inside, for example, you will find filigree drawings of comics as well as newly combined objets trouvés from the artistic archive. These objects have been transferred from the public space into the context of Schaufenstergalerie SCHARF: while they were still hung in the open street with the invitation to interact and break the glass in order to take the inside, they now appear as museum-like relics of public actions. At the opening of an exhibition at Schaufenstergalerie SCHARF, performances usually take place as a conceptual element of the curation of the exhibition space. That performances are able to carry what is presented in the window gallery onto the streets of the City of Graz. This time, the collective’s actions will take place on public spaces on a specific basis: By discovering the object and interacting, the passers-by of a shopping street can become actors in their own artistic performance. Thus, the idea of a performative intervention runs through the entire urban area of Graz.
This project was a cooperation with Atelier X. „Kollektiv SKYBLUE“ is a pseudonym; behind it are Mário José Santos Soares and Philipp Strohmaier. The two artists began these subtle interventions in public space in 2015. it was particularly interesting to observe the interaction of passers-by in the urban space of Graz during the weeks following the opening: Numerous blue fire emergency boxes were found empty.
Bullet Shih and Josef Wurm
opening performance by Erwin Stefanie Posarnig
3rd of November – 2nd of December 2016
The exhibition „MÖGLICH“ with Josef Wurm and Bullet Shih (both live and work in Hungary) questions the possibilities of the creation of art. How can two different artistic positions interact in a window gallery? What references do they build among themselves in the context of public space? A performance by Erwin Stefanie Posarnig will be transmitted via Livestream from Lisbon to Graz. The artist will spontaneously interact with the works presented in the window gallery. Posarnig thus takes the quintessence of the idea behind this project to the extreme. This time the exhibition at Schaufenstergalerie SCHARF is about the process in which contemporary art is created, the unpredictable. In the words of Josef Wurm, quoting an old proverb “With every decision, a thousand possibilities die.”
An installative work was presented: Bullet Shih developed a sculptural work consisting of half a coconut shell and antlers with Hungarian lettering. Josef Wurm added a parasol mushroom and Hungarian sausages. As an artistic installation, both are reminiscent of origin and decomination. The performance by Erwin Stefanie Posarnig was projected into the window gallery. Characteristically for the artist, the focus was on religious symbolism and a questioning of existing systems. Afterwards, Josef Wurm spontaneously presented one of his so-called “fire performances”, which took place for the first time in Graz.
Das Haus, das Verrückte macht. Atelierlandschaft Lego-Keil
“The house, that makes weirdos. Studio landscape Lego-Keil”
Kunstverein Roter Keil
26th of August – 2nd October 2016
In accordance with the working method of the “Roter Keil” art association, new and old are presented in a self-referential miniature. Everything and everyone is connected in some way. The old and long forgotten or “useless”, just like the remains of a city and its inhabitants: where ideas gather, emerge, disappear or remain: submitting to constant change and its creators. The work exhibited at Schaufenstergalerie SCHARF is not so much a reflection of existing real events, but rather a jointly developed and partially lived utopia, of a thoroughly chaotic interwoven studio life. A digression of the entire ensemble. Just a little smaller. In a performative act, life is breathed into the scneraio: image, fiction and utopia touching each other.
Within a performance at the exhibition opening, the object was inserted into the window gallery. The joint project allowed the art and culture association Roter Keil to be viewed in the window gallery for two months – a project that was worked out together over weeks and at the same time represents the situation of collaboration.
sound performance by Eva Ursprung
27th of May – 22nd of July 2016
Based on the theme of the callomania, the obsession with beauty, of our society, with that artist Alexandra Gschiel already dealt within various projects, the artist develops a socially critical art work for Schaufenstergalerie SCHARF. Above all, the so-called ideal body dimensions of a woman 90-60-90 are critically examined in this work. How much are we influenced by media-spread notions of beauty and how much do they already constine us? Surrounded by a plurality of shop windows from the fashion and consumer world, the object with its accompanying video encourages reflection on precisely these. A performance by artist Eva Ursprung enlivenes the street around Schaufenstergalerie SCHARF – and expands it in the form of an auditory intervention in the citiy centre.
The object, a corset made out of measuring tapes, and the accompanying video visualize the prison of beauty mania. What dimensions should a body have according to the ideal image, and what dimensions does bodies actually have? How serious should we appreciate the given ideal measurements and how seriously do we take them? The opening was well-rounded by a sound performance by Eva Ursprung, which showed a clear connection to the exhibited work. With a band of cloth made out of the same material as the corset inside the window gallery, the artist used her saxophone to sound the theme of the confinement of the prison of obsession with striving for the ideal.
Supported by the Kulturamt of the City of Graz and the Styrian Government, department 9.