"My work wants me dead, I know. It is all it ever talks about," writes Steve Reinke in an exchange of letters on the occasion of his exhibition at mumok. Death and life, empathy and cruelty, sex and intimacy—it is the ‘big’ questions the artist is after in his work. In the best Nietzschean manner, however, Reinke considers man not a political or moral being but a puppet of microbiotic agendas: instead of the Freudian ego or Id, bacteria, placenta, and plankton rule the world in his videos; ‘culture’ designates not humanistic achievement but life in a petri dish. In his first solo museum show, Reinke presents a new video An Arrow Pointing to a Hole as well as a selection of text images and needlepoints, all of which, in a paradoxically precise manner, tell of loss of control, formlessness, and self-abandon.
Curated by Manuela Ammer