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Manfred Wakolbinger - The Ephemeral and the Eternal

Category: Portrait 16. May 2012

Change, transformation, mutation, metamorphosis: Manfred Wakolbinger questions the surrounding space around us and puts our perception on a new level, in order to open us up for receiving beauty. From 3 of June till 14 of Octobre 2012 works of Manfred Wakolbinger will be presented at the Gallery of Lower Austria for Contemporary Art at Dominikanerkirche Krems, Körnermarkt 14. We met Manfred Wakolbinger in his atelier in Vienna and produced an artist-portrait.

According to a Presocratic the intelligible is found in movement, and if truth is a materializable or at least recognizable human endeavour, its possibilities are codified within the capture and the apperception of the eternal flow, of the continuous change and movement.
This ultimate cause leaves its mark on the work of Manfred Wakolbinger, who is obsessed with identifying the sources and transformations of reality.
Something cryptic is concealed in all his works, by means of which the surrounding space camouflages- sometimes an object appears to be what it is not, yet it can also be what it seems. Wakolbinger makes the viewer collaborate with his work; he invades the space of the individual viewer and plays with it, his sculptures engage in a struggle between human perception and the laws of physics.
His realism is of a second order, demands a decoding of the symbols and a deconstruction of the signifiers. As a creative result, this process imposes upon the viewer an expansion of his visual conjectures.
Whether if film, photography or sculpture, Wakolbinger uses the most diverse techniques to achieve a single effect: creating inner and outer images which generate and display emotions and perceptions. His works rearrange the space in which they are, causing uneasiness and perplexity. Manfred Wakolbinger is an artist who does phenomenal journeys through reality and reflects on what he sees. Investigating the relations between micro- and macrocosm, he searches for causalities, creates ambivalences and is never entirely certain about anything.



His conception of life makes him enhance form and matter, in order to create a space where he inserts universes which in other times would have been mythological.

He constructs myths that reflect on life, where the ultimate purpose is to bring the myth to the viewer, to connect the myth with its era, to penetrate the space in order to speak about life and death, beyond historical facts. From pictorial material, he builds mythologies, works that establish an aura of transcendence. The forms and techniques are manifold, but behind them is the impulse to create myths.

This creation of myths is definitely not a religious intentionality in the traditional sense, but constitutes a suitable structure for initiating a dialogue with contemporary existence.

Manfred Wakolbinger helps nature to go step further and transforms it into art, because what nature gives us from the very beginning is a sometimes overwhelming spectacle, but not art. Without human intervention there is no art.

If art is in such a fragile thing as an idea or subtle deliberation, every fact, every detail, no matter how marginal, can undermine the intended sense. Manfred Wakolbinger reflects on the surrounding, and recreates it in private space, rearranging what nature is unable to create – surfaces that refer the inside, towards cosmos and nothingness, who throw back the viewer upon himself, to the abyss of the void and the return to existence.

In an investigation that is more philosophical than religious, the artist appoints himself as a giver of a special meaning, founding it in the composition of these dynamic objects – we could call them phenomena; in order to understand and reconstruct them, he represents them less immediate manner or in accordance with their presumptive identity features.

Manfred Wakolbinger seeks to experience the sublime in a world obsessed by science and objectivity where transcendence has disappeared beyond the horizon.

The starting point is metamorphosis. After the metamorphosis and the negation of the form the world lies before us emptied, and the origin becomes manifest – what appears is the first ray of light in the world: its beginning, its meanings, its forms: life itself. (written by Cem Angeli)

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