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Rudolf Rischer - Of Drawing and Stage

Category: Portrait 23. February 2018

What is behind the wall or behind the door? Who is on the stairs, and what is happening in the room?
Buildings float in the air, perspectives are tilted, stairs lead up and down and into the void, bridges connect the unconnectable. The spatial organization by distinctive elements like columns, galleries, partition walls, footbridges and dominating diagonal ceilings is enhanced be expressive lighting - by lamps, the moon or unknown light sources.
Walls, surfaces and edges are crafted meticulously, emphasizing the geometry of the spaces. The sceneries seem ambiguous, these organized dream labyrinths are subject to transformations, time and again they divide into bright and dark surfaces, they become triangles or other geometric shapes or shadings.
Shapes are floating in an indeterminate abstract space, as opposing realities. Rudolf Rischer’s constructions are restless abodes where even emptiness is in a peculiar existential motion. New works of Rudolf Rischer are now on display at CA Contemporary gallery in Vienna.

In order to understand these pictures, the viewer has to lean into them, to enter them with his imagination, in order to find out what is lurking behind the paper surface. Spaces and scenes in Rischer‘s images can be expressionless or touching, some are sober, severe, ominous, even alarming.
The abstract projections generate clearly divided, dramatic spaces that are often connected to several other levels.
However, at times lines give up their organizing function, misleading us into the void of imaginary spaces. Rischer’s constructions go beyond geometry, transcending it as a kind of manifestations of sensory and mental states, instead of functioning just as compositions based on technique and shape.
In this tense relation between absence and presence, Rischer combines, transforms, removes, condenses and reduces as decidedly as an abstract artist, in a permanent interaction between the real and the imaginary in his work.
The expressivity of the interiors is not merely a result of theatrical influences, the dramaturgy of the rooms is not limited to aesthetic, affective, psychological or semiotic dimensions. They virtually have an operational function, they are not just passive sceneries, the stage itself becomes an actor.
Rischer draws not a statical but a dynamic, performative space that interacts with the characters, or the viewer, or both. Latent situations unfold as potentially existing dramas.
Rischer’s approach is constructivist, his comprehension of the operational dimension of spatial arrangements shapes his esthetic decisions. Innovative perspectives, superior mastery of lighting effects and the use of colors support the suggestive effect based on imagination and the manipulation of volume.
Time is suspended on this stage, it is ready for a play about to begin or to end. By light, shadow and backgrounds, the dreamlike scenes and their undefined characters constitute an unsettling world of their own.
The pictorial architecture is reduced to essential forms, in some instances it is accompanied by some distinguishable figures, although no story is told in this space, there is no narrative, only form. The characters also seem to be in order to there to be regarded as pure shapes. They stimulate the imagination but at the next view everything can be different again. The longer and the more often one looks at these pictures, the more contradictions they will reveal about their distorted world.
Viewer beware : They may lead to irritation, uncertainty and disturbance, but definitely to a new point of view.
Rischer himself remains consistent with his exploration of the unknown, giving all his pictures the title „Untitled“. (written by Cem Angeli)

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