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rethink duality
Evelyn Loschy & Sofie Muller
9.11.2017 - 13.1.2018
in cooperation with Geukens & De Vil Gallery and Vienna Art Week

Muller Brandt 450  Loschy nothingisforfree detai 450pxl

09.11.,18h: Opening

13.11, 18h: Artist Talk
Stef Van Bellingen in conversation with Evelyn Loschy & Sofie Muller 
In context of the Vienna Art Week 2017

rethink duality
Different education, different background, and different working condition but Sofie Muller and Evelyn Loschy work on the same topic: construct and deconstruct the realities, they represent the duality of human existence, shaped by the recognition of what life is and the knowledge of inevitable disappearance. Rejecting traditional art forms like painting, they use methods and genres that allowed them to deconstruct the image of the body such as kinetic sculpture, sculpture installation and video.

with the friendly support: Botschaft von Belgien / DELEGATION VON FLANDERN

Rethink duality by Miljana Mirović

When one is on the verge of recalling memories, one can have the sense of nearing recollections of great power; these emotion-laden scenes often beckon inward, into tantalizing, sometimes disturbing feelings of loneliness, bleakness but also hope.

The exhibition "rethink duality" presents the work of Sofie Muller and Evelyn Loschy. Through the juxtaposition of contrasting elements, both artists engage the audience in conflicting emotions. This exhibition reflects radical thinking expressed through a diverse range of media, from (kinetic-) sculpture, video to works on paper, in which the (absent) body gives expression to a divided reality, besieged by emotional and social control. Both artists are not afraid to look into the hidden crevices of the human psyche, without shying away from the abyss that can be found inside.

But, what in its core, connects the works of Evelyn Loschy and Sofie Muller? Indeed, they are both female, they are both rejecting the conventional art forms such as painting or drawing. But what is this thin thread that connects and intertwines their oeuvres in such a symbiotic way? Their main topics revolve around deconstruction of the reality, and ultimately it comes down to dealing with sensitive (childhood) memories of the individual past that overwhelm the ordinary human adaptations of life. They create a challenging vision of our world, exposing its contradictions and complexities while making the audience rethink, recollect and relate to the strong affect that is emanating from the pieces. Through their sculptures and videos both of the artists are taking the role of a narrator of a different reality. When the spectator is faced with these alienated and introverted artwork, they transform, and represent no more a mere art piece, but a memory – a suppressed emotion. And no matter how isolating they seem, they also give hope to the viewer.

Sofie Muller is well known for her sculptures, performative videos and smoke drawings, the latter arise with smoke traces of candle flames, - which challenge the formal languages of surrealism to expose a world characterized by contradictions. The sculptural series "Alabaster Mentalis" by Muller opens up old wounds and sheds light to the ones that have not fully healed. All of them will eventually harden, and become physical or mental scars and deformations just like the ones that are visible on her isolated heads. Albeit simultaneously creating the scars in a raw yet poetic way, they will never disappear, and will be left as an unwanted reminder.

Expunging or oppressing a memory in one's mind seems like a tangible notion when looking at particular works of both artists. Evelyn Loschy works with a large variety of materials and methods, reaching from video, site specific interventions to kinetic sculptures which have become the focus of her work. Destruction and self-destruction play a central role in her oeuvre. In one of the gallery rooms one can see the kinetic-destructive sculpture "Nothing is for Free" made by Loschy. A swing is hanging from the ceiling of an empty room. While swinging, time and time again, the object hits the wall and by doing so causes partial injury, a scratch. With every repeating clash, the wall is removed bit by bit. However, the swing will never be able to fully go through the wall. Having a closer look, one can realize the children's swing is made out of steel that turns into a threatening and cold mechanism rather than an inviting one. The machines movements become a destructive performative act, in which a children's toy transforms into an apparatus of unrest.

While in "Nothing is for Free" the direct bodily references are completely absent, in the other room, "Brandt" from Sofie Muller, shows a bronze body of a boy, leaning with his head and shoulder passively against the wall. Behind him a black drag mark positioned at the height of his head can be seen. If examined closely, one can notice that half of the boys' head, made of wood, is burned completely. The burn represents a drastic sign of an inner wound and is one of many examples in Sofie Mullers' work of using fire in an effort to burn the (possibly) traumatic experiences from memory. But no matter how hard the try, traces of the memory can still be visible spread out on the wall.

These two sculptures are connected through the gallery wall. On the one side of it, the swing slams against it and on the other the boy leaves his traces. They try to communicate and capture the transient moment of human existence. The wall serves as a canvas for both works, a tabula rasa in a sense. On it, the traces of memory are shown, smeared on the wall and fading out of the injured head or localized but strong and concrete, unwilling to break. Ultimately, no matter how different their approaches are, the end game is the same. Regardless how hard one tries, one can never run away from their own memories. Burned or scarred, they can never be fully destroyed. Through these works, the artists wish to activate a psychological and emotional response. The sculptures encourage the viewer to mentally project themselves onto the objects. In a very general sense they create a situation where reality itself becomes a questionable point while simultaneously dealing with the vulnerability of the body.

the whole text on the exhibition: Miljana Mirović | rethink duality

more information can be found HERE >
Evelyn Loschy & Sofie Muller


short press release: rethink duality | Evelyn Loschy & Sofie Muller
Press photo 1: Sofie Muller, Brandt, 2011, patinated bronze and burnt wood, height 133 cm, Courtesy: Sofie Muller / Geukens & De Vil Gallery / galerie michaela stock
Press photo 2: Sofie Muller, AL/XXXXX/17, 2017, Red parnonstone, H31 x B26 x D21, Courtesy: Sofie Muller / Geukens & De Vil Gallery / galerie michaela stock
Press photo 3: Evelyn Loschy, nothing is for free, kinetic-autodestructive sculpture, 2013, iron, motor, transformer, pulse width modulator, concrete / brick wall, 1 + 2 AP, dimensions variable, Courtesy: Evelyn Loschy / galerie michaela stock
press photo 4: Evelyn Loschy, I met Eduard Steinberg but never got to see him, 2017, video, loop, 3:23 min., hd, colour, sound

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