As a parallel event to the current exhibition of the Baroque sculptor Franz Xaver Messerschmidt at the Österreichische Galerie im Unteren Belvedere (from 11 October), Galerie Suppan contemporary presents a comprehensive show of works by Florentina Pakosta.
A kind of kindred spirit led the artist to engage with those character heads of the master created in exceptional psychological situations and further to renew the expressive potential of her art.
Since 1969, she has produced drawings, etchings and woodcuts that document an almost obsessive engagement with her own reflection. The spectrum ranges from the grimacing mask to the probing questioning and persiflage of the self.
Florentina Pakosta will talk about Messerschmidt's significance for her work on 23 Oct. 2002 at the Österreichische Galerie. Her motto: "My commitment to
Franz Xaver Messerschmidt...".
As a female artist in an art world dominated by men, Pakosta broke new ground in the contemporary reception of Messerschmidt. His significance as a source of inspiration for contemporary art received international recognition. The explosiveness in dealing with extreme psychological states in a reflection of the social environment - internationally recognised as an outstanding characteristic of contemporary art in Austria - was developed by Pakosta in a singular achievement as a woman in her cycle "Paraphrases on Franz Xaver Messerschmidt's Character Heads". In her pictorial inventions of a socio-critical realism, she thematised feminist content very early in Austria.
The exhibition "Köpfe" comprises more than 50 works and shows not only the etched cycle of paraphrases, but also numerous works in stencil technique and large-format portraits.
Habsburgergasse 5, 1010 Vienna