“how to write III | artists read their texts”
              Kirsty Bell
              Even for art audiences who are by now used to all kinds of dematerialized art objects—performers in lieu of objects or sets of instructions replacing lists of media—this exhibition of four artist-writers at Galerie Wien Lukatsch sets the bar high. It consists solely of recorded voices with no visual props whatsoever, posing a challenge to attention spans atrophied by the constant state of distraction that appears to be the new norm. There is nothing to see here but the walls and windows, radiators and parquet floors of Wien Lukatsch’s third floor apartment gallery, barely furnished with folding metal chairs, tatami mats, and speakers. Stripped of visual distractions, each separate room—dedicated to a single artist reading texts aloud—feels more like a West Berlin doctor’s office than an exhibition space. But what kind of ailments could be treated here? Chronic synaesthesia? Terminal Fluxus Wortspiel? As the spoken words evaporate in the surrounding air, language seems almost impossible to grasp, and meaning even more so. Most apparent, however, was the pointed absence of the speakers themselves, all of whom passed away in the past forty years. Born in 1928, 1930, 1943, and 1925 respectively, Arthur Köpcke, Dieter Roth, Tomas Schmit, and Emmett Williams were contemporaries, …

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