Group exhibition - on Stillness and Silence

04.08 - 02.09.23

"I lie in bed, and I am awake, but nothing inside me can move. My eyes are open and fixed, I can't close them. I am fucking awake! - and IT IS STILL", is how the philosopher Konstanze Caysa begins one of her writings. These are magical moments, thoughts turn, one is not alone. The exhibition "On Silence and Stillness" wants to transfer a certain calm mood to the viewer, because that is also the power of art: to make us become still.


The states of stillness and silence are masters at taking us on a journey of thought. For artists, the secret of self-birth lies in this, in order to develop new creative ideas and solutions. In the context of this profound engagement and devotion, highly precious works of art emerge. This calm, quiet, gentle, soundless, motionless and inaudible art gives the impression that something is missing, but it is precisely from this quiet depth that an incomparable beauty resonates. The viewer is invited to contemplation and to a dialogue with himself and the art. Still and silent art creates space for thought, stimulates, gives spiritual energy, calms and opens up a new level of thinking and feeling.

In today's turbulent and complicated times, silence and stillness seem to be a luxury. Yet the search for it is particularly urgent today. Time out from the hustle and bustle is associated with the qualities of energy refuelling, contemplation and being with oneself. Silence has something sacred about it, it can also mean the end of the line, but silence is always a birthplace of the new.

Silence and stillness have always played an important role in art. The history of the visual arts is full of works that invite to inner contemplation: Paintings of churches and chapels, paintings whose presentation invites us to sit down, become still and soak up the power of the colours. Their characteristic is not the loud sensation, but the gentle experience.

With the beginning of modern art, at the end of the 19th century, artists developed the ability of dematerialised seeing. It is the beginning of abstraction, which also has connections with occult and esoteric ideas. Most artists of this early abstraction came into contact with spiritual currents: Taoism, Anthroposophy, Zen - Buddism, ... But it is not only abstraction that transmits silence and stillness to the viewer. Wasily Kandinsky said: "The great abstraction and the great realism, there can be many combinations in between. What is decisive is the inner necessity, the inner sound, i.e. the content-related intention, the message, the meaning of the work". Thus, according to Kandinsky, by no means everything and anything was permitted, but only that which could convince with inner necessity. It is precisely this inner necessity that gives rise to works of art with an impressive, seductive power to induce a poetic trance.

Among the many art movements of the 21st century, abstract expressionism and minimal art are the arts that most clearly symbolise stillness and silence. Take, for example, the spiritually charged artworks of Mark Rothko, or the artworks of American artist Agnes Martin, characterised by schematic clarity and serial repetition. "I paint with my back to the world," Agnes Martin explained, and what she wanted to capture in her austere nets was not material existence, the earth and its myriad forms, but the abstract glories of being: joy, beauty, innocence, happiness and oneself.

Stillness and silence are precious moments in artistic creation. The American artist Ad Reinhard said: "The painting process is part of the artist's spiritual purification: in emptiness lies fulfilment."

The group exhibition "On Silence and Stillness" is intended to encourage participatory surrender, to escape the noisy world for a moment.

Artists: Flavio Senoner, Josef Kostner, Andreas Zingerle, Andrea M. Varesco, Alessandro Del Pero, Marlies Baumgartner and Wilma Kammerer.

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