September 30 to November 25, 2016

«Art and Nation»



The paradigmatic guidelines for the international group exhibition involve materials used in the search for a national cultural identity coupled with a critical discussion of the question of what the term “nation” might mean for us today. The show negotiates the issue of national identity and asks: Who are we, and who are the others? It examines the relationship between aesthetics, art, and nation, in other words, the emergence of nationalism and racism. What role is played here by images, symbols, and aesthetic productions? How is a feeling of belonging engendered, and is this possible only through exclusion? What defines a region: a common language, a certain dish, an article of clothing, a flag, a symbol?

One method for analyzing the works of art on view is to assemble and juxtapose images on a particular theme, for example, the iconography of edelweiss over a period of 100 years (Pia Lanzinger/Michael Hauffen). Christina Werner for her part compares depictions of appearances made by chairpersons of radical right-wing parties in her work “Neues Europa” (The New Europe), in which certain gestures, staging, and pathos formulas recur. Another artistic approach is to show the involvement and participation of particular figures: given an ironic spin by Anna Witt as a struggle between various nations around a flag, while Sascha Reichstein looks at the experience of flight and the crossing of national borders.

Artists: Pia Lanzinger/Michael Hauffen, Sascha Reichstein, Christina Werner, Anna Witt

curator: Hemma Schmutz