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Art Watch : Klaus Pinter

Klaus Pinter is in focus for our Art Watch for today. This section is brought to you by Art From Us and Divvya Nirula. The Artists we spotlight here can be from any field, across any discipline, and using a variety of media. We share here why we think they are important and worth watching. Be it genius creators of eras gone by. Or the upcoming contemporary artist who is yet to have their first show. All come under the purview of Art Watch.

The stunning works that Pinter presents us with are vast fluid structures, many times suspended in mid air, in spaces specially chosen – that are representative for a lyrical and romantic setting. This is his way of creating a an extension from his imaginative fantasy, onto us -the viewers. The floating installation are simply marvellous as they draw you in. They communicate a sense of largess. And demonstrate the immensity of all that surrounds man, one wants to interact, feel and perhaps communicate with the works at a psychic level. Klaus uses a materials that are flexible, inflatable and are open to change. When sculptures have been synonymous with bronze, marble and solid form, Pinter gives us a new form. Moving towards plastic and nylon as their core media. His work has been panned as bizarre. But for me his works are a testament to the artistic vision married to a knowledge of engineering and architectural skill.

Pinter founded the Haus-Rucker-Co group in Vienna in 1967. It was a deliberate move to strike out from Fine Art and became a forerunner in the installation and locating of a work of art in a given context. His initiative and ground breaking work played a part in forging the reputation of the Austrian radical scene in the 1970s.

Why Klaus Pinter?

Pinter concentrates his research with Haus-Rucker on experimenting with a new relationship with the body, and is involved in a scathing critique of the notion of progress, industrialisation and its consequences on the environment. The artist invites us to ponder the notion of space, symbol and tradition, as someone who has always turned to the architecture of historical sites or museums for inspiration

From the inception in 1967, Pinter is continues exploring the potential of inflatable structures with unwavering passion. Illustrating Pinter’s desire to steer clear of attraction through fluidity, plasticity and buoyancy and to free himself from flat surfaces in favour of the surrounding architecture, polyphonic compositions made up of antagonistic materials and ornamental motifs. His installations are singular and inspiring as is his approach. He has faithfully devoted to his philosophy for forty years, unfettered by fashion. ‘These “pneumatic” installations, or “ephemerides of modernity”’ says Yves Kobry ‘must be understood in the etymological sense, in other words, they are endowed with the breath of life, a soul, not simply because they are transformed by a thought, but because they fly over and sometimes collide with history and culture.’

The precision and meticulousness of an architect, in combination with a poetic imagination. The work of Klaus Pinter is at once disconcerting and fascinating.

A pioneer of the installation, the works glide over fashionable phenomena. They are a testament to the artist’s effort to incorporate the surrounding architecture through lightness and light. Pinter’s most applauded works are owned by the MoMa in New York, the Centre Georges Pompidou and the Albertina in Vienna. Klaus Pinter now lives and works in Vienna and in France, on the island of Oléron.

About Pinter

This Austrian artist was born in 1940 in Schärding am Inn. He graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna, and went on to made his debut as a professional artist in the early 1960s at the Fuchs Gallery in Vienna. Pinter lived in New York for a hiatus of seven years, spent a few years in Belgrade, Bonn and Paris, before moving back to Vienna and île d’Oléron off the west coast of France.


For more Artists handpicked by Divvya Nirula – explore the ART WATCH archive.

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