Exhibition: Saturday, June 9, through Sunday, September 16
Artist Talk: Thursday, June 14, 6:30 p.m.
Figge Art Museum, 225 West Second Street, Davenport IA
On display from June 9 through September 16, the Figge Art Museum's new exhibit Alois Kronschlaeger: Polychromatic Contemplations will acquaint visitors with the talents of one of America's most prolific artists, a native Austrian whose work, as he states, “deals with space, light, color, how you intervene and activate a space, and how a space can be a combination of both interior and exterior.”
The New York-based Kronschlaeger combines weaving, sculpting, and painting in intricate sculptures whose geometries and colors appear to change as the viewer moves through the gallery. Kronschlaeger’s works explore his fascination with architectural forms and their relationship to the surrounding landscape. When visiting the Figge in the fall of 2016, the artist recognized an immediate synergy between his geometric sculptures and architect David Chipperfield’s building design and the civic grid on which it is sited.
Consequently, in his Figge exhibition, Kronschlaeger seeks to remind visitors of the historic division of the Midwestern landscape into squares that form the boundaries of townships, farms, and homesteads in the process. Polychromatic Structures features site-responsive installations of Kronschlaeger's geometric polychrome basswood and ink sculptures, arranged according to the light, scale, and vantage points of the gallery environment. For this exhibition, the artist will also produce a large-scale structure that spreads across the walls of the gallery, bringing three dimensions into a space traditionally reserved for two.
Kronschlaeger's practice is greatly influenced by the avant-garde legacies of Constructivism and post-Minimalism, and he strives to create a phenomenological experience for the viewer. As the audience moves through the space, and light and reflections shift, Kronschlaeger's sculptures morph into new forms. This dynamic is heightened by the artist's adept manipulation of color relationships, which produce optical and kinetic effects evoking the paintings of Carlos Cruz-Diez and the Penetrables of Jesús Rafael Soto.
With their geometric form and variation in scale, Kronschlaeger's sculptures also suggest urban industrial architecture. Similar to a metropolitan cityscape, the works come alive in the tensions between positive and negative space and through the element of human interaction. Shaping the audience's experience of the gallery in this way, Kronschlaeger invites contemplation on how the built environment guides our behavior.
An artist talk for Alois Kronschlaeger: Polychromatic Contemplations will take place on June 14 at 6:30 p.m., and regular museum hours are Tuesdays through Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (open until 9 p.m. on Thursdays) and Sundays from noon to 5 p.m. For more information on this and other Figge exhibits, programs, and events, call (563)326-7804 or visit FiggeArtMuseum.org.