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Annual Press Conference 2017

Thursday, January 12, 2017

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Gift of Gertraud and Dieter Bogner: Friedrich Kiesler

Austrian Collectors Give mumok Their Collection of Important Works by the Visionary Artist Friedrich Kiesler

Gertraud and Dieter Bogner are among mumok’s most dedicated supporters, passionately connected with the museum for the past ten years. The couple gave mumok a large collection of works back in 2007, and their collection has been catalogued and researched by the museum. In 2017 this cooperation is crowned by a very special gift to the museum. Today, on January 12, 2017, Gertraud and Dieter Bogner are giving mumok numerous major works by the Austrian–American architect, artist, stage designer, and theorist Friedrich Kiesler. These works will be on permanent loan within the auspices of the Austrian Friedrich and Lillian Kiesler Private Foundation and will continue to be accessible to the public in their premises, as has been the case for many years.

The Bogners’ interest in concrete abstraction, and in conceptual and media-based approaches and art movements is unusual for Austrian collectors. Their purchases are consistently based on a focus on the contents of formal works and theory. This is also true of their support of the work of Friedrich Kiesler generally and now also in terms of their generous gift to mumok. Kiesler began early to break down the borders of conventional notions of genre, building bridges between various types of art. “The Bogners’ collection contains both art with an affinity to discourse and corresponding text and archive materials. This kind of comprehensive and discursive collection is a core part of mumok’s identity as a museum. It is a great stroke of good fortune for mumok that we are being given major works by Kiesler as a gift, including a series of vintage prints of the 1924 City of Space, one of two existing models for an Endless House (1959), the large conceptual drawing for the Vision Machine (1941/1949), and numerous further works and archive materials”—mumok General Director Karola Kraus is clearly delighted.

Gertraud and Dieter Bogner explained their decision as follows: “We are convinced that the significance and standing of the works by Friedrich Kiesler that we are giving to mumok will become fully evident through the contractual agreement to cooperate between mumok and the Austrian Friedrich and Lillian Kiesler Private Foundation. It is important for us that in increasing our 2007 gift to the museum with our Kiesler collection we are able to guarantee the conceptual unity of the collection we have been building for some decades now. We also wish that the Kiesler Archive is able to work with these major works and to present them to the general public.”

This gift is accompanied by the publication of the second part of the collection catalogue, entitled Perspectives in Motion. This will link that part of the collection focusing on works prior to 1945 with the most important writings by Dieter Bogner on art theory and history, addressing this period in general and the related collection.

The collection that this catalogue volume presents stands for the concept that Dieter Bogner himself formulated for a “transdisciplinary museum of the history of ideas in Austrian modernism,” as a tender for the 1989 competition “Museumsquartier.” This truly welcome idea is still awaiting implementation.

Preview: Exhibition Year 2017 at mumok

In 2017, mumok is presenting an ambitious program of exhibitions. The first half of the year is particularly shaped by women’s voices. We begin with a new arrangement of the mumok permanent collection, curated by artist Jakob Lena Knebl. Entitled Oh… Jakob Lena Knebl and the mumok Collection, this presentation will reset works of classical modernism and the 1970s and also include new courageously eccentric own works by the artist. At the same time we present Small Room, a solo show by British Hannah Black. Her young and decidedly feminist position will then lead to the historical feminist works from the SAMMLUNG VERBUND collection, whose current touring exhibition Feminist Avant-garde of the 1970s from the SAMMLUNG VERBUND will be shown from May in mumok under the heading WOMAN.

With a solo exhibition by Martin Beck in summer 2017, mumok recognizes the achievement of one of Austria’s most important contemporary artists. At the same time Beck will present his own view of the mumok collection by showing a selection on the entrance level to the museum. The summer also includes the artist duo Fischerspooner, who are among the most prominent protagonists of international pop culture. Casey Spooner and Warren Fischer will present their glaring and playful universe full of queer lust and countless references to pop culture in the shape of a large installation.

After its successful première in 2016, the Kapsch Contemporary Art Prize will again be jointly awarded to a newcomer living primarily in Austria by the Kapsch Group and mumok in 2017. The prize comes with 5,000 Euro prize money and a solo show at mumok, with an accompanying publication. The Kapsch Group will also purchase a work by the winner for the mumok collection.

The year will conclude with two large thematic exhibitions. In the group exhibition Natural Histories, invited artists will explore representations of nature with reference to social processes and events from contemporary history. The second exhibition will present one of the key personalities in mumok’s own history to the general public, as already done in the 2015 exhibition Ludwig Goes Pop.  This time the focus is on collector Wolfgang Hahn, whom mumok has to thank for much of its collections of works of nouveau réalisme, Fluxus, happenings, and conceptual art.

Thanks to generous support from the mumok Board, from 2017 all exhibition openings will be celebrated in Hans Schabus’s Café Hansi. This bar decorated with all kinds of paraphernalia associated with the everyday name of Hans will open on March 16, 2017. 

Exhibition Dates 2017 

Oh…Jakob Lena Knebl and the mumok Collection
March 17 to October 22,2017
Press conference: March 15,2017, 10 am 
Opening: March 16, 2017, 7 pm

Hannah Black
Small Room

Marchc 17 to June 18, 2017
Press conference: March 15,2017, 10 am
Opening: March 16, 2017, 7 pm

WOMAN
Feministische Avantgarde der 1970er-Jahre aus der 
SAMMLUNG VERBUND

May 6 to September 3, 2017
Opening: May 5, 2017, 7 pm

Martin Beck
rumors and murmurs

May 6 to September 3,  2017
Opening: May 5, 2017, 7 pm

FISCHERSPOONER
June 30 to October 29, 2017
Press tour: June 28, 2017, 10 am
Opening: June 29,  2017, 7 pm

Natural Histories
September 22, 2017 to January 14, 2018
Press conference: September 20, 2017, 10 am
Opening: September 21, 2017, 7 pm

Art into Life!
Collector Wolfgang Hahn and the 1960s

November 10, 2017 to  Juni 24, 2018
Press tour: November 8, 2017, 10 am
Opening: November 9, 2017, 7 pm

Kapsch Contemporary Art Prize 2017
November 10, 2017 to March 11, 2018
Press tour: November 8, 2017,  10 am
Opening: November 9, 2017, 7 pm

Collection Presentation 2017
watching sugar dissolve in a glass of water 
May 6, 2017, to January 14, 2018
Curated by Martin Beck