K.U.SCH. - An Array Of Subjects
At present, Zeitkunst Niederösterreich has the first comprehensive retrospective of the art group K.U.SCH on display, in the Shedhalle St. Pölten, curated by Alexandra Schantl and Hartwig Knack.
From 1972 on, the artist duo and couple Krätschmer und Jörg Schwarzenberger (both born 1943) started to develop interdisciplinary art projects under the name K.U.SCH. In 2006, their son Sito Schwarzenberger joined them, adding his new media art to the work of the group.
In this surprisingly opulent exhibition the visitor gets an overall picture of more than 4 decades of art production. There are objects like the testicle brakes, the birth spectacles or the headfirst dwarf, as well as concepts for land art, masks, shields, ritual poles, but also experimental films and performances are on display in this show.
On of the aspects distinguishing the comprehensive artwork by K.U.SCH is the critical attitude towards the status quo and the political commitment in a given historical situation. They work with different methods like object art, painting, graphic art, film, music, performance and theatre. Taking art off its pedestal, they introduce it into everyday life, with new materials and means of artistic expression. They take objects from the most diverse realms and incorporate them into their work, transforming them into art. Their work is multidisciplinary as well as interdisciplinary.
In this spirit, the artists of K.U.SCH are manufacturers of an art which combines diverse elements having a common denominator: a predominant aggressive expressivity, the intentional reduction of the message to a highly concentrated quintessence, and the creed of a poetic artificiality of the commitment.
In 1978, Krätschmer and Schwarzenberger, who had both studied at the academy of applied arts in Vienna, decided to retreat from the academic art scene and moved to the countryside. They worked of their farm nearby Melk, on streets and squares, as well as in the locations of the art business. They performances were conceived as hybrids that nevertheless had their roots in the tradition, like painting and drawing, sculpture, music, poetry theatre and dance, new art forms like experimental film, video, installation and digital art – and even non-artistic sources like anthropology, sociology, ancient customs and religious rituals. The result is an art the seeps into the public’s conscience through its cracks and gaps.
The expressive performative power of K.U.SCH’s work has yielded a multitude of levels, approaches and nuances, generating an art that permanently transforms and reinvents itself. With its changeable and eclectic physiognomy it has not one, but many histories. (written by Cem Angeli)
An artist portrait on the occasion of the K.U.SCH. retrospective at ZeitKunst Niederösterreich by CastYourArt