Markus Schinwald

Markus Schinwald

M Leuven

Markus Schinwald, Orient (still), 2011. Film. © Markus Schinwald.

September 24, 2014

Markus Schinwald
2 October 2014–8 February 2015

Opening: Wednesday, October 1, 7–10pm

M – Museum Leuven
L. Vanderkelenstraat 28
B–3000 Leuven

For the first time in Belgium, the Austrian artist Markus Schinwald is presenting a survey of his varied artistic practice. The work he is showing at M was created over the past five years in a variety of media, from installation and film, to sculpture, painting and interactive pieces. It includes underwater scenes with hundreds of colourful fish; mechanical marionettes; sculptures suggestive of body parts; films; a moving installation with paintings; and a theatrical setting featuring performers and artworks.

Markus Schinwald’s work tells of man’s place in the world. He is interested in the notion of physicality and in the possibilities and limitations of the human body: the body as representation of the individual, but equally as a cultural construct. Schinwald investigates how the body is inscribed in a cultural and psychological context, and how it relates to space. His work is influenced by the cultural history of the body, psychoanalysis and technology, and by dance and performance.

In five successive rooms, Schinwald shows facets of his most recent work, several elements of which are exhibited here for the first time. ‘Animation’ is the thread running through the exhibition: the artworks are brought to life mechanically, they provide a setting for living creatures, or else they suggest movement. The rooms are in darkness, which means that the visitor’s gaze is fixed on the artworks, all lit by spotlights or illuminating the space themselves. The exhibition presents six aquariums, with fish swimming around scenery that refers to previous exhibitions. Each underwater scene is like an animated painting or composition, in which the viewer’s gaze moves back and forth between the movement of the fish and the motionless sculptural interventions. M also presents the film Orient, which was first shown at the 2011 Venice Biennale. The everyday actions and choreographic movements executed by the performers are echoed in a large installation with marionettes, each of which seems to be trapped in a specific, banal movement. Schinwald is also showing a new series of paintings, in which he has abandoned the intimate portrait format of earlier works. There is more emphasis here on the surroundings: the figure tends to be absorbed in an abstract setting. In addition to these large paintings, the exhibition includes new wood sculptures made from table legs. These resemble body parts, which twist like dancers or oversized insects along poles several metres high. The final room of the exhibition is flooded with sunlight. Three white walls move subtly in and out from one another. Each wall of paintings rotates slowly on an axis and can be manipulated. In this way, Schinwald once again brings a performative element to the exhibition.

Curator: Eva Wittocx

Live performance
Markus Schinwald & Oleg Soulimenko: A Stage Matrix 1
16 November, 4pm
STUK Arts Centre, Leuven, as part of the festival Playground

In A Stage Matrix 1, the performer plays with an idiosyncratic furniture machine. You wonder, as spectator, whether it is the performer portraying the furniture or vice versa. Nothing is what it seems, and practical logic has disappeared.

Markus Schinwald, born in 1973, lives and works in Vienna and New York. Schinwald has taken part in numerous solo and group exhibitions, and his work features in various museum and private collections. He represented Austria in 2011 at the 54th Venice Biennale. Schinwald has been the subject of recent survey exhibitions at the Kunsthaus, Bregenz (2009), Mücsarnok Kunsthalle, Budapest (2009), Migros Museum für Gegenwartskunst, Zurich (2008), Palais de Tokyo, Paris (2013) and CAPC, Bordeaux (2013). He exhibited in 2014 at the Milan Triennale and at CCA Wattis, San Francisco. Markus Schinwald is represented by the galleries Gio Marconi, Milan; Yvon Lambert, Paris; and Thaddaeus Ropac, Salzburg.

Exhibition supported by the Österreichisches Kulturforum

For more information, please contact Veerle Ausloos: veerle.ausloos [​at​]

Markus Schinwald at M – Museum Leuven
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