LONDON.- Richard Saltoun Gallery
announced the second of their two-part series of Viennese art: Feminism.
Following on from Part I: Actionism, Richard Saltoun presents the work of Valie Export and Friedl Kubelka. Both artists posited their art at the centre of artistic debates of subjects of gender, the body, and politics. The photographic images and films that result from their practices are presented through the lens of a personal reflective awareness of the body.
Seminal works exhibited include Smart / Export II, Valie Exports iconic self-portrait of 1967/70 in which she holds a package of rebranded cigarettes. Born Waltraud Lehner, she created her artists name based on Smart Export, this brand of cigarettes she was smoking at the time.
Kubelka presents her celebrated Jahreportraits (Year Portraits): a project begun in 1972, in which she photographed herself daily over the period of a year and has repeated the process every five years since. Key examples of this series are exhibited alongside her Pin-ups, 1971-1974. These intimate staged self-portraits, taken by Kubelka in Paris and Vienna, directly confront the viewer in their adoption of the erotic.
Export and Kubelka were both included in WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution (MoCA, LA, 2007) and elles@centrepompidou (Centre George Pompidou, Paris, 2009). This is the first time they will be exhibited alongside one another in the UK.
Valie Export (b. 1940, Linz, Austria)
Exports iconic work Touch Cinema (1968), in which she constructed a Styrofoam box and placed it over her chest, inviting passersby to reach in and touch her breasts, still resonates for its shock-value and use of experimental mediums. A recipient of the Grand Gold Decoration for Services to the Republic of Austria (2010), her work was included in the 53rd Venice Biennale (2009). Solo exhibitions include Centre George Pompidou, Paris, (2008) and Kunsthaus Bregenz, Bregenz, Austria (2011).
Friedl Kubelka (vom Gröller) (b. 1946, London, UK)
Born in London to parents seeking political refuge, Kubelka spent her childhood in East Berlin before her parents settled in Vienna. She studied industrial photography at the Graphic Instruction and Research Institute, Vienna, from 1965 to 1969. She later founded her own 'School of Artistic Photography' in the city (1990), and the School for Independent Film (2010). She was awarded the State Prize for Photography in 2005, Austria's most prestigious photography award, and has had solo exhibitions at the Centre George Pompidou, Paris (1980), Fotogalerie, Vienna (2004), and the Nederlands Fotomuseum, Rotterdam (2005). Her films have been screened at: Generali Foundation, Vienna; Anthology Film Archives, N.Y.; documenta 12; Austrian Film Museum; Toronto Film Festival (2009, 2010); Hong Kong Film Festival (2010, 2011). The artist is referred to as Friedl Kubelka when referencing her photography and Friedl Vom Gröller in relation to her filmography.