Body & Soul

6 Apr 2016 – 30 Jun 2016

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"The body is a visible translation of the soul" (Christian Morgenstern). Different positions on questions of the body.


What attitude do we take today vis-à-vis our body and sexuality? In the 20th century, Western society revolutionised and redefined its relationship with the body, but also brought problematic aspects to light. Artists reflected these developments, of course, particularly after 1945. Post-war Austria saw the head-on confrontation between hypocritical sexual morals and far-reaching denial and sub-culture avant-gardes striving to overcome these obstacles. Vienna Actionism, a movement that produced art which still has the power to shock, is now considered one of the most significant achievements of Austrian art. Body & Soul is devoted to a subject widely represented in the Essl Collection, the human body in all its facets. The exhibition places the topic in a wider social context and traces its evolution up to the present. The human body may serve as platform for the expression of inner states and feelings, as exemplified by Maria Lassnig’s body awarenes paintings; it can be a metaphor for metaphysical notions, or, as in Marc Quinn’s sculpture Allison Lapper, it may celebrate beauty beyond social norms.


Andreas Hoffer

Exhibiting artists

Karen Holländer

Atelier van Lieshout

Peter Sengl

Martin Eder

Valie Export

Adolf Frohner

Maria Lassnig

Max Streicher

Otto Muehl

Virgilius Moldovan

Daniel Richter

Ronald Kodritsch

Herbert Boeckl

Ilse Haider

Gudrun Kampl

Muntean / Rosenblum

Monika Pascoe Mikyšková

Günter Brus

Jonathan Meese

Mira Gáberová

Marcin Maciejowski

Herwig Zens

Hermann Nitsch

Franz Ringel

Nan Goldin

Martin Schnur

Marie Luise Lebschik

Rudolf Schwarzkogler

Yang Shaobin

Irina Polin

Rosa Loy Steffen Junghans

Bianca Maria Samer

Peter Land

Jörg Immendorff

Daniel Lezama

Anton Kolig

Marc Quinn

Marc Quinn

Elke Krystufek

Patricia Jagicza

Alen Kasumović

Francesco Clemente

Siegfried Anzinger

Georg Baselitz

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