Heinz Frank lives, thinks, and works outside the well-trodden and well-paved avenues of the contemporary art business. In fact, he does not call himself an “artist”. Categories of any kind, he argues, are too narrow even when we others think them expansive enough. Still, we are inclined to associate his thinking, which he articulates in visual and formal as well as poetic verbal creations, with – not some ism, but the sphere of the “surreal”. For where and how else might we define “transforming the unformed into the formless” or “the inside as the outside of an other”? Setting himself tasks and problems of this sort, Frank does not obsessively try to resolve them; approaching them with serene earnestness, he is indefatigable in working out their implications. He molds, draws, sketches, and paints, montaging and combining elements of his own making with found objects and engaging with the material to probe the tensions between polar opposites such as hard/soft, cold/hot, interior/exterior, beginning/end and reveal what unfolds between them. In Kunsthalle Wien Karlsplatz’s glass-fronted gallery, Heinz Frank will scrutinize the angles “of the end” – the room’s four corners – as well as the double-faced nature of images appearing on translucid boundaries between the space of art and the urban environment. Does this also mean that “a rimless hole will fly from tree to tree, from hole to hole, without flying”? The possibility cannot be ruled out.
Heinz Frank (b. Vienna, 1939) studied architecture at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna (1965–69), where E. A. Plischke was his teacher. He has made fine art since 1970, moonlighting as a designer of retail spaces and custom-made furniture, and has had numerous exhibitions in galleries and museums. In 1986, he was honored with the sculpture award of the City of Vienna. Frank’s work was shown at the Museum of Applied Arts (MAK), Vienna, in 1992, and in the exhibition Unrest of Form. Imagining the Political Subject at the Vienna Secession in 2013.
Curator: Lucas GehrmannHeinz Frank, Das Hinten und das Vorne der Anderen, 2000, Installation view Charim Galerie, 2013, © Photo: Markus Krottendorfer, Courtesy Charim Galerie Vienna