Franz Ehmann: Many Things (its a colourful world):
As I walked into Franz Ehmann’s studio, I instantly noticed a faint aroma of honey. His suburban Brisbane studio is neat and ordered. His works are displayed in close proximity to personal, domestic items, framed within a backdrop of still-wet washing, and a carefully manicured garden. These sweet amber objects, I discovered, were comprised of carefully arranged piles of beeswax bricks. These bricks, each exactly 1 kg in weight and with identical dimensions have been installed in stacks echoing minimal sculpture of the 1960’s or modernist housing towers. Yet, each discrete object comprised its own unique hue and textural quality, despite their precise production. Natural materials such as beeswax, eggs and milk are recurring motifs in the artists work, and not only fill his exhibition spaces with sweet aromas, but point to ideas of life cycles and purity. His past experiences as a chef may have informed the selection of such materials where, essentially, raw food matter is converted into sustenance for the body and, furthermore, life…Read more.
Thematically this Installation is headed by luxury and ephemerality and highlights inherent ideological distinctions of having too much and having not much at all.
As a counter argument it tries to dissolve the tyranny of choice between luxury and ephemerality, though whose world is not ruptured by the “big decisions”.
By many ways, global and local,…Read more.
Words that changed the world and influenced the weather.
Wordstorm: One for the road. The before too long News: Rich people paying rich people to tell middleclass people to blame poor people In my studio everything is art Do not cross this line The feet walk into darkness Fingers caress the remaining daylight LowfatFatfreeTranquilizedegg POEM:LOVEhateLIFEfeelEASYdoneFACTfallFAILfameGOALhaveLOTSexit 14 four letter words starting with Z: Zags, Zany, Zarf, Zeal, Zebu, Zero, Zest, Zinc, Zing, Zins, Zoea, Zonk, Zoom and Zyme. Emergency Art – FunfunFun – Truthdig Warm up Rockaway Line up as not an icon & there is always an alternative Foreign beggars One love group totem Turned down for what? Turned down for not much at all. Do it again. Foreign beggars arrested. Do it again. Love you forever tour cancelled. Do it again. Emergency. Crisis. Do it again. Monster Jam Open Culture. I’m sorry. If you were right, I’d agree with you. What time is it? Time has passed me by… I come from where I am, I come from where you haven’t been, there where I’m not, there where you are not, born I am, as it matters to more than one language, to more than one country, ridiculous! We have guided missiles & we have misguided men, we have everything, we have, pharmacies, drugs & fighter planes, we have a gallery full of sand, a swamp & animals all dead. We have, communication, a litany of words. …Read more.
The room is a landscape of grey newspaper. Newspapers neatly stitched together with transparent sticky-tape cover the entire surface of the galleries concrete floor. The audience tramples all over this textual carpet as they spill into the room. Partially blocking their smooth entry, however, stands an industrial rubbish skip. On the outside, the skip is decorated with multi-coloured stripes rendered in enamel paint, evenly spaced like a TV test pattern. On the interior floor of the skip is a projection of tonight’s performer Franz Ehmann, emerging cocoon-like from newspapers formed to create a synthetic chrysalis. To one side of the skip, a technicolour paint-spill echoes the brightly hued stripes decorating this prosaic industrial object. The sudden explosion of colour spread across the carpet of newspapers appears to represent primordial chaos, that of the world as much as of the artist. More specifically for the artist, it also conjures something of an art-school prank: a variant of the ubiquitous slapstick banana-peel. The sticky paint mass seems fittingly unformed and randomly applied; the press is always slippery. In contrast, the hard-edged televisual stripes colouring the skip suggest inhibitive media restrictions that, in this case, literally bind the artist, at the same time relegating his or her attempts to break-free of narrow, externally imposed creative stereotypes, to the status of refuse…Read more.
Franz Ehmann requested that we do not disturb the spheres in his title for a series of works consisting of tiny coloured dots and metallic spheres, most probably made of scrunched up chocolate wrappers glued to a black paper background. But as soon as my eyes fell upon these humble galaxies hovering behind framed glass I realised that I had definitely caused a disturbance. I saw the paint, foil, and the paper, and then I saw myself in the glass, blinking amongst the spheres. I was part of this galaxy, as I was also a part of this exhibition, and contrary to his title, I think this was exactly what the artist had desired. From the moment I trod upon the large multi-coloured dots on the floor, it was apparent that Franz Ehmann had invited me into the art of his latest exhibition, ‘Maximum Acceleration’. He elicited a performance within this unlikely installation made up of predominantly wall-mounted works. In this instance, Ehmann had quietly invoked the multifarious nature of his practice; one that speaks through sculpture, text, installation, photography, video and performance. The artist once again pulled the viewer in through his sensitive assemblage of materials and motifs, which were arranged to amplify their symbolic potential.1 He had carefully constructed a language of dots, grids and black expanses for his guests to enter. …Read more.
Franz Ehmann’s work is staged at the end of a story. A series of menus denoting the last meals of prisoners on death row painted on black paper, like instructions written on a blackboard. Can there be a more evocative sense of an ending? These panels are memorials of a sort, although anonymous and even comic. We are what we eat, up to the point of death. Yet these meals tell us nothing of the ones who, in solitude, enjoyed them. Nor anything of their deaths, nor the crimes they committed that led to their execution. These menus are estranged signs of an individual’s death, and the contents of the last decision that this individual could make. A most personal decision too, reflecting an almost incomprehensible judgement of taste: after all, any interpretation of the significance or estimate of the value of such a choice will sound banal and trivial. One prefers junk food, perhaps as comfort food. Another chooses a healthy snack, perhaps out of habit or even to try something new. A final gesture of liberty at the scene of a penalty that is absolute? There is no point to such a choice on the brink of execution. There is no point to any choice. In a grim way, these menus are summative statements on a life: last words and a testament which amount to nothing in particular. As such, their absurdity eclipses their poignancy…Read more.
Trust me everything is true.
Done my best. Failed all. All failed. Some steps taken better. Better steps failed some. Some failed better. Stepping aside. Stepping forward. Stepping backward. Backward always fails. No gain. Still one step. Step failed. Step forward, fail again. Another step in the right direction. Direction fails. Where to? To where? Somewhere is somewhere is nowhere is there is here. Here, one step more. More to come. Come more steps. One after the other. One other after each after. After failure, one more. Failure, once more. Step aside. A side step. Doesn’t matter. Wrong direction. Direction wronged. Stepping wrong, stepping right. Right failed. Side stepping a side step. Once more a step. Count. It counts. One step.
Through the mouth into your existence. For more.