Air encloses the earth like a membrane. It is the medium of weather and the carrier of odours, sounds and aerosols that influence both climate and health. Air flows into our bodies with our first breath and with death we exhale our last breath. In the context of the current climate crisis, air pollution and storms as well as wind power as a renewable energy source play a role. The invisible element connects living beings, plants and places. The works of the selected international and Austrian artists of different generations aim to make this elementary, yet invisible element visually tangible. They deal with the most diverse aspects and meanings of air, wind and breath and examine their manifestations in ecology, science, politics, culture and mythology. From the life-giving air we breathe to the destructive power of the wind, art makes the great invisible visible in many different ways.
On view will be among others the video work Irma to Come in Earnest (2017) by Julius von Bismarck as well as his photo series One More Night (2016).
Irma to Come in Earnest warned a news headline of September 2017, as the category-five hurricane swept through the Caribbean and bore down on Florida. Its arrival is the subject of Bismarck's eponymous film, shot in Miami amid gale-force winds, flooding, and desolation. In an attempt to fathom the essence of a hurricane beyond the media spectacle, the black-and-white footage is drastically slowed down, taking in rain and debris swirling through empty streets, submerged cars, and houses in disarray. A haunting ambient soundtrack pieced together from news reports is slowed to the same pace as the moving image, rendering it unintelligible.
22 international and Austrian artists make the invisible elements of breath, air and wind visible in different ways: Hoda Afshar, Bigert & Bergström, Julius von Bismarck, Olafur Eliasson, Karin Fisslthaler, Ana Grilc, Isabelle Ha Eav, Jana Hartmann, Ayumi Ishii, Sophie Jung, Sjoerd Knibbeler, Ulrike Königshofer, Eduardo Leal, Emily Parsons-Lord, Peter Piller, Werner Reiterer, Roman Signer, Lydia Simon, Ulay/Marina Abramović, Nadim Vardag, Niina Vatanen, Susan Walsh
The exhibition When the Wind Blows is a cooperation with the University of Applied Arts Vienna.
Curators: Verena Kaspar-Eisert (KUNST HAUS WIEN) and Liddy Scheffknecht (University of Applied Arts Vienna).