Austrian sculptor Franz West’s “Gekröse” sold out on the first day of its exhibit for a seven digit sum. Considering its humungous size one would know that the sculpture was bought by person with an extremely large house! Jona Lueddeckens, from the gallery, remarks that this is Franz’s biggest creation till date.
“Gekröse” is titanic. One of its kind, the sculpture is probably one of the biggest pieces of contemporary art. Its size is perhaps the most striking feature of its appearance. It is monumental and intimidating, yet playful and whimsical in same measures. This imposing piece of art was colored a cheerful rosy hue of which gives a jocund tone to the overall dynamics and flow of the sculpture. A single glance at this exceedingly convoluted structure raises several images in the mind of the beholder. The person watching it can interpret as anything from a humungous primeval cephalopod to a scaled up representation of the human intestines to a gigantic pile of feces (depending on how sophisticated or daft the imagination is!). Franz has always been known for sculptures that have had some form of attached functions. They are essentially artistic furniture which can serve as a place for social interaction. This welded aluminum sculpture however seems to represent a whole new vista of development within Franz’s opus.
West began his days in Vienna during the 60s. Actionism in art and sculpture was the word of the day during those times. Franz started out with this movement and his works portrayed radical public behavior which meant to stir up the passivity in the art world. During the 70s he pioneered a new sculpture form called ‘Passstueke’ or ‘the Adaptives’. They were crude sculptures made of plaster that were quite small and portable. The sculptures could be deemed as completed only when their viewer interacted with them in a physical manner. This inspired his later works and ultimately the “Gekröse”.