Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA)
28 Nov 2005 to 12 Feb 2006
The first solo exhibition in Australia of Austrian artist Erwin Wurm, this exhibition brought together a selection of significant earlier works as well as his more recent explorations. Through experimentation in performance, photography, installation, drawing, video and text, Wurm pushes the boundaries of sculpture by investigating elements of time, mass, and material form. The exhibition offered a comprehensive picture of Wurm’s vision, ranging from video footage to live sculptures to do-it-yourself artistic statement. Among the best known pieces were his One Minute Sculptures 1997, a collection of 48 still shots of men and women choreographed into absurd, whimsical and often dangerous positions with inanimate objects.
Wurm’s work is concerned with finding ways to extend the associated with pioneering performance and conceptual art of the 1960s, into formal works of sculpture. While appearing purely comical on the surface, there are complex messages beneath these temporary sculptures that elevate them above the status of mere incident, form, and behaviour. These sculptures provide satirical commentary on life and art. In this exhibition, visitors were invited to participate in the artwork, physically interacting with his ‘ready-mades’ such as a dog kennel, flowers and tennis balls. The artist drew on well-known sculptural and performance traditions of the twentieth century but at the same time engaged with today’s social concerns and behavioural taboos, from paranoia to indifference.