Reflective materials accentuate a break in art of the twentieth-century: Since the late 1950s, artists have sought modes of expression that would propagate a renewal in art. Thus, new techniques and materials have found their way into their artworks. The mirror, previously a more symbolically charged motif in painting, was discovered as a material to explore the physical properties and issues of light, time, space, and movement. Particularly the avant-garde ZERO artists with their kinetic-light objects pursued new approaches. Adolf Luther used mirrors and lenses as instruments to make reflected light visible. Otto Piene presented light as a design element which activates the actual artwork via reflection, whereas Michelangelo Pistolettos mirror objects thematise the painting discourse and refer to the viewer as a participant. Artists such as John M Armleder, Katharina Sieverding, Subodh Gupta, and Erwin Wurm also use mirror material in multifaceted ways.
The fascination with shiny and reflective objects characterizes the Schaufler Collection, from which the show SPLIT is curated. Many works combine beauty and coolness with a dash of glamor. Not only the reflective surfaces of the artworks have endeared the collectors, but also subtleties, changes in visual perception and illusion that are expressed in the ambiguous word reflection. Meant is not only the physical process in the work, but so also is the critical thinking associated with the paintings, the images, and their references to the world.
ARTISTS IN THE EXHIBITION:
Getulio Alviani · John M Armleder · Robert Barry · Daniele Buetti · Lee Bul · Jean-Marc Bustamante · Enrico Castellani · Tony Cragg · Carlos Cruz-Diez · Ian Davenport · Christian Eckart · Elger Esser · Sylvie Fleury · Gilbert & George · Antony Gormley · Subodh Gupta · Lori Hersberger · Gerhard Hoehme · Roni Horn · Anish Kapoor · Astrid Klein · Brigitte Kowanz · Bertrand Lavier · Adolf Luther · Heinz Mack · Christian Megert · Mathieu Mercier · Yasumasa Morimura · Maurizio Nannucci · Andy Ouchi · Giulio Paolini · Otto Piene · Jack Pierson · Michelangelo Pistoletto · Anne & Patrick Poirier · Thomas Ruff · Adrian Schiess · Katharina Sieverding · David Simpson · Vincent Szarek · Wolfgang Tillmans · Not Vital · Gary Webb · Erwin Wurm