Whenever Erwin Wurm dips into the infinite reserves of the world of real objects, and turns one of them into a sculpture, then the object he has chosen is transformed into something new, with its own particular significance. Cars, potatoes, cucumbers and items of clothing are just some of the objects from the real world that he has treated in his sculptures, turning their meaning and thereby producing new images. The idea of performance plays a key role in this process. Wurm transforms what seem to be banal situations, gestures and actions into one-minute sculptures and expressions of frozen time. Simply by freezing a gesture for just one minute, Wurm reveals levels of meaning that are not apparent at normal speed. Photographs help to capture sculptural situations and to make still images of them. This can also be done in film: a man stands motionless from sunrise to sunset, and this period of time captured on film transforms him into a sculpture that is more firmly fixed and more constant than even the sun that moves across the sky during the day. Wurms penetrating and ironic approach turns cars into weird objects that curve and twist, lean up against walls, or, as he shows on film, drive up the walls of buildings and turn the horizontal and the vertical on their heads.
The Erwin Wurm exhibition in the Kunstbau
at the Lenbachhaus will richly illustrate the artists work. His diverse approaches to sculpture will be shown, with an equal emphasis on all the many different means of expression that he has developed in particular over the past seven years. These include not only sculptures, but also texts, single sentences and statements that express populist thought in provocative ways. Wurm sees these statements as a form of social sculpture that embodies intrinsic contradictions. The catalogue will therefore include a text in which Wurm answers the questions posed with questions of his own.