Helnwein Painting
December 30, 2005


Radical Apathy

It’s Not Like I Pick Fruit

Posted by Jim in Envy and Pride on Dec 30 2005 08:33 am

I’ve lost my voice.

I don’t mean that in the philosophical (”I find myself uninspired to write”) sense. I don’t mean that in the overly dramatic sense (Eg: my throat is scratchy and hoarse). I mean it in the most literal sense possible.

As of yesterday afternoon I have lost my voice and can’t talk except for a barely audible whisper-type “talk” that involves not pushing air through my throat (the part of me that appears to be fucked up) but instead from the smaller pocket of air in my mouth.

Anyone who knows me, even superficially, can immediately understand how frustrating and difficult this kind of an illness is for me.

It all started off with a headcold just before Christmas to which I immediately applied the usual Jim remedy for any and all illness: work harder and longer hours and continue running outside early in the mornings. [It should be noted, for the record, that this “remedy” was much more effective when I was in my late teens and early 20’s than it is now that I am in my 30’s. ] After a few days of feeling generally stuffy and popping Advil Cold & Sinus “Non-Drowsy” formula like Tic-Tacs, I started to feel better yesterday morning. By early afternoon, however, I found my voice getting quieter and quieter. No matter how hard I would try to talk - I simply couldn’t get volume. When I attempted to yell “Linds!” (my secretary is named Lindsey and I’m too lazy to use the intercom system - thus at least 50 times per day I scream “Linds!” to get her to come into my office - she actually jokes that after 4 years of working for me she actually hears this in her sleep sometimes).

I immediately attempted to cut back on how much I was talking in the hopes that “resting my voice” would solve the problem. This is not, however, an easy thing to do in my line of work. Talking is what I do. It’s not like I pick fruit for a living. I talk. I talk to opposing counsel. I talk to the Court. I talk to my staff and Associate about what they need to do for our clients at any particular moment. Most of all - I talk to my clients. All day. Every day. I give them good news. Bad news. I hold their hand and tell them it’s going to be okay. I tell them when I don’t think it’s going to be okay and we need to consider cutting our losses and letting the soon-to-be ex-wife keep the Gotfreid Helnwein painting that my client always loved and the wife always hated, until she decided that if he gets to keep banging his dental hygenist, she gets to keep any expensive art he previously cherised.

Talking is what I do. I would go so far as to say talking is who I am. I have rapidly learned, in the last 24 hours, how eerie the combination of my physical presence but vocal absence is to anyone and everyone who knows me. Seriously - those of you who know me in “real life” - can you picture sitting with me and not being forced to listen to me talking?

This sucks. I find myself wanting to write and write and write - just so I can feel like I still exist and am expressing myself in some way. Combine my inability to talk with the fact that I am trying to recover from this headcold and, thus, I am also not running (my main form of stress relief to the point where my office staff joke that they can tell, by my mood, how long I ran on any given day or, God forbid, if I didn’t run at all that morning). I can’t talk. I can’t run. I can’t stand this crap.

Try it sometime. Just a taste. Don’t talk for 2 or 3 hours (and I don’t mean in a movie theatre - I mean in a regular everyday context). Am I the only one who finds this maddening? Are there people out there who would enjoy it? Something tells me that Marlen would love this - and might even occasionally feign this kind of illness just so he doesn’t have to talk to anyone for a day or two.

I would explore this with my therapist - but I had to cancel my appointment with him for last night. Again, the whole thing would have been rather pointless without the ability to talk.

I miss talking. A lawyer who can’t talk is like a surgeon with Parkinson’s. There’s just no point. You just sit there frustrated and totally unable to do what you need to do, want to do, love to do and get paid to do.






Austrian artist Gottfried Helnwein


Neil Shicoff: Home for a Voice
Source: Gala (January 1999); translation by Karen Mercedes

He is one of the best tenors in the world. On the opera stage, Neil Shicoff risks everything. But at home, he is a gentle head of the family. Gala met him in his house in Zürich.

However, his wholehearted merging with his stage characters, which brought him the title "Pavarotti for the intelligentsia", also pushes Shicoff out of equilibrium again and again. In particular, the role of the fisherman Peter Grimes, who is suspected of causing the death of a ship's boy, plunged him into a months-long depression. In Vienna, rehearsals even had to be cancelled, so violently was Shicoff shaken by bouts of weeping. A painting by Austrian artist Gottfried Helnwein, depicting him during a performance in Vienna, hangs in his living-room as a reminder of those days.

The façade is deceiving. He seems delicate with his slender 1.75 meter [approx. 5'7"] frame, the gentle visage framed by thinning hair, the slim legs in close-fitting black leather trousers. Almost like an overgrown child. Nobody would assume that our easy-going host is the owner of an imposing mansion in the finer section of Zürich, nor that he is a celebrated tenor - not only that, one of the most difficult ones in his fach.

Six times Neil Shicoff, 49, committed the unforgivable sin of opera: he stopped a performance midstream. One time a colleague sang with too little emotion. Another time the conductor disrupted Shicoff's own sense of harmony. "I am not difficult, I'm just demanding," he says, trying to explain his compulsive perfectionism. "If I can't get completely into character, the public loses out."

However, the native-born American manifests his compulsion for perfection only onstage. He built his mansion somewhat haphazardly because of a slope, and chose the furniture with his second wife, Dawn Kotoski, 33, on their travels. The Biedermeier sofa in the living-room comes from Berlin, where he lived for three years, the Biedermeier desk from Vienna, the light-coloured sofas from Milan. But the pieces seem rather lost, making the living room seem like a showroom. It's hard to imagine Shicoff's son Alexander, 6, and his friends romping once a week around among the antique vases and statues. "I just told him that he'll inherit everything one day," Shicoff explains with a smile. "Since then, he's been cautious." But however much the tenor loves his antiques, they have no sentimental value. "The house and furniture aren't important to me. My home is Dawn and Alexander. They give me stability and normality," he tells us during the conversation that he gladly holds in the bright kitchen rather than on one of the elegant sofas. He leans back comfortably while Dawn prepares lunch and Alexander crashes around through the house.

The imposing living room aside, the residence is like the single-family house of a very normal family. On the ground floor, toys stream out of the little boy's room, books are stacked in Shicoff's work-room. The narrow stairs, on which Alexander later eats his lunch, lead to the first floor where the master bedroom and guest room are located.

His surroundings seem unspectacular indeed - but they have a very special value for Shicoff: they bring him back him again and again from the dark world of his roles. Because truly absymal characters fascinate the tenor, in them he finds himself again. As in the title role in Benjamin Britten's Peter Grimes or Hoffmann in Jacques Offenbach's Les Contes d'Hoffmann (a role he had to cancel at the Hamburg State Opera because of an infection). "Hoffmann dealt destructively with his creativity," says Shicoff. "As I used to do for a long time, in order to accept my talent."

Shicoff grew up as a synagogue cantor's son in Brooklyn. Actually, he should have become a lawyer. But at 27, he was already debuting at the Metropolitan Opera in New York. "I was very arrogant at that time, because I was only interested in how long I could hold a high note, and how it sounded. Today that I know that sound is only the means to an end. The goal is reaching the audience. Talent is not technique, but the ability to communicate." However, his wholehearted merging with his stage characters, which brought him the title "Pavarotti for the intelligentsia", also pushes Shicoff out of equilibrium again and again. In particular, the role of the fisherman Peter Grimes, who is suspected of causing the death of a ship's boy, plunged him into a months-long depression. In Vienna, rehearsals even had to be cancelled, so violently was Shicoff shaken by bouts of weeping. A painting by Austrian artist Gottfried Helnwein, depicting him during a performance in Vienna, hangs in his living-room as a reminder of those days. Here, at his new Steinway-Flügel, he rehearsals for his performances. "During the production, I suddenly became the ship's boy, and my father was Peter Grimes," Shicoff explains. "I felt as helpless as a little boy. My father tended to be unstable, and I never felt safe near him. My inner conflicts were first stirred up in my childhood."

Personal strokes of fate plunged the exceptional singer into crisis again and again - like his mother's death from cancer in 1984. "I hope that in our conversation I can convey her will to live. When she died, I never wanted to go onstage again; I cancelled everything. If I couldn't save her, how could I possibly reach an audience?"

He regained the confidence in his ability to give something to others rather coincidentally. "At the time, I saw Robert Redford's Ordinary People at the movies. It's about two brothers, the stronger of whom dies in a boating accident. The weak one survives. It reminded me of my conflict with my father, and it helped me. And I thought: if a film gives me so much, then maybe I can also achieve something with my performances."

He wants to continue risking everything in his performances in the future. Because he knows that his home will bring him back to real life again. With his obsessive working methods, he hasn't become a megastar like one of the Three Tenors or Andrea Bocelli. But he is one of the most profound, fascinating tenors of our times.

- Vanessa




Diseño en la red
febrero 27, 2005

Arte Visual de Gottfried Helnwein

Sitio del austriaco Gottfried Helnwein con completa información y galerias de este artista al cual hemos podido apreciar en videos de la banda alemana Rammstein y en el trabajo visual del ultimo disco de Marilyn Manson "The golden age of grotesque".
Sitio recomendado por la cantidad y calidad de su contenido.
Website en todos los idiomas y con vinculos a todos los sitios relacionados con el artista.

Para visitar el sitio del artista Gottfried Helnwein haz click aqui.

posted by WRONG-USER at 12:40 PM | 0 comments




Gregor Seyffert in Los Angeles
July 2004

Los Angeles/Berlin, July 2004
Press Reviews

Welt am SONNTAG, 11th July 2004

Artistic Schumann Festival
Rheinische Post, 12th July 2004

Heaven cannot wait
Westdeutsche Zeitung, 12th July 2004

By Trapeze to Paradise
NRZ, 12th July 2004

Robert Schumann: „Paradise and the Peri“
koeglerjournal 2003/2004, 11th July 2004

Der Opernfreund / Der Merker, 10th July 2004

Press Release
Gregor Seyffert in Los Angeles
Los Angeles/Berlin, July 2004

In the beginning of June, Gregor Seyffert filmed his most recent production "Paradise and the Peri". in Los Angeles. The production also included two students of the State Ballet School Berlin, of which Gregor Seyffert has been the artistic director for the last two years.

Gregor Seyffert is the artistic director of the project and overall director of the video production, and has always dreamed of using film in a large scale format. The film sequences shot in Hollywood were meant to be shown as part of the performance of "Paradise and the Peri" at Duesseldorf concert hall.

The project was filmed at the studio of the painter and performance artist Gottfried Helnwein, who works as the costume and stage designer for this production and is also the artistic director of the film production.

Seyffert and Helnwein were overjoyed to co-operate with cameraman Robert Brinkmann, who is famous for his co-operation with Roger Every, co-author of Quentin Tarantino, in America and Europe.

Gregor Seyffert's ravishing full-length work "Paradise and the Peri", which cuts across art genres, turned out to be the spectacular highlight of this year's Schumann festival in Duesseldorf on 9 July 2004. It included the Duesseldorf Symphonic Orchestra, conducted by John Fiore, and the 120 strong choir of the Staedtischer Musikverein Duesseldorf, , plus leading ballet soloists of Deutsche Oper Berlin, renowned guest artists, distinguished international acrobats and representatives from the martial arts' community as well as students of the Berlin State Ballett School.

In addition to being the Artistic Director of the production, Gregor Seyffert also danced, acted and played the part of the Peri, an angel which was banned from paradise.

There is an abundance of spectacular photographs by Gottfried Helnwein available. For further information contact the press and production office of Thomas Guggi, Phone: +49 30 442 63 53, E-mail: TGuggi@t-online.de.


Press Reviews
WELT am SONNTAG, 11th July 2004

The Düsseldorf Schumann Festival dares to embark on a new beginning. Gottfried Helnwein illustrates the Oratorio “Paradise and the Peri” with his fantasies

In fact cries suit a festival dedicated to the composer Robert Schumann quite well. The great musician moved somewhere between Avant-garde and downfall. After three years of having served as the Düsseldorf Music Director, he flung himself from a Rhine bridge and was then taken to a mental hospital in Bonn. On the other hand, any festival director must come up with a stunning programme and hand in a healthy return of investment, otherwise he will soon run out of money, and sponsors, thereby killing the festival. This is why a couple of years ago, the Düsseldorf Robert Schumann Society decided to put the festival, which was a little dusty in form and content, into mothballs. The aim was to revive it and to conjure up something new, modern, which would point to the future: a true Schumann.

After four years of silence the time had come: These days, The 8th Schumann Festival is taking place, and it may be seen as a real test. Will it come off or not? In the first place, this is an artistic question. However, in the case of festivals of this level, there is also the financial side to it.

Judging from this angle, it was not by coincidence and certainly not the worst decision that the Schumann Society has taken, which nominated cultural manager Christiane Oxenfort to be the Festival Director. She is a woman from Düsseldorf by birth and conviction, and had already distinguished herself with another brilliant cultural event. Thirteen years ago, she founded the old town autumn festival “Altstadt Herbst”. This was at a time when financiers where still shamefacedly called Macaenas. However, Oxenfort did not shy away from openly addressing the subject of sponsoring. She has succeeded. “Altstadt Herbst” festival has survived until today, and what is more, it has offered a programme which not only comprises local art, but also artists whose importance transcends the region.

“Altstadt Herbst” festival does not only afford the secure drawing cards, but also the odd experiment. And the determination to invite the maladaptable. This, of course, is a good recipe for a Schumann Festival. The “Night journeys”, for instance, are an element which in this or a similar vain might also be part of “Altstadt Herbst”. On five different locations late at night, artists improvise, interpret, read, sing and perform, while the audience can make out its own dramaturgy. However, new things are offered at different times throughout the day as well. After all, the name of Schumann obliges that it stage’s premieres. It cannot be welcomed enough that the new version of the festival finally takes Schumann’s sentence seriously, which was printed in the programme: “Value the old highly, but also turn out a warm heart to the new”.

Naturally enough, the festival’s true focus is on the œuvre of Robert Schumann. But his œuvre already includes a number of pieces which call for a readiness to take considerable risks in order to be included in a programme. This is also true of the Oratorio “Paradise and the Peri” for solo voices, choir and orchestra. In the last few years, musicians increasingly approached it, but to only modest success. Today’s audience find it difficult to stomach this dragged out story of a Peri. She is the deplorable child of a fallen angel and a human being and has to gain access to Paradise by telling three stories that are full of blood and tears. It is really hard to imagine what drove the daring composer Schumann to believe that proceeding from such a corruption of religious themes he might create a ‘new genre for the concert hall’.

Presumably, the Düsseldorf performance of “Paradise and the Peri” will not be able to achieve a full rehabilitation of the work. But still it turned out to be a successful approach. The dancer and choreographer Gregor Seyffert and the Austrian all-round artist Gottfried Helnwein hung a huge ring into the dome of Düsseldorf Concert Hall, which looks like an aura of saintliness out of proportion to the vast dimension, or an advent’s wreath without needles. Up there, five dancers were performing acrobatics, floating up and down on steel ropes. With their white leather hats, they looked like a godly parachute unit at formation jumping. Down on earth, the Peri was struggling to be accepted into this suicide mission. Gregor Seyffert certainly looked like an overexposed Marylin Manson. Instead, the angels crashed down several times. People with fragile nerves had better close their eyes in time. Yet this staging of the Oratorio was more than an acrobatic trifle. Both artists used the 150 year-old piece for their own aesthetic approach.

Seyffert as the portrayer of the androgynous. And, even clearer, Gottfried Helwein. He lived out his fantasies of blood and bandages in his films, which were shown on large format video screens. Having to deal with Schumann’s exalted oratorio and its Nazarene qualities, he presumably felt perfectly at home like in his Catholic childhood. The mystery spectacle pushed the soloists, some of them first-class singers, a little bit into the background. However, with this work of Schumann’s, this might even have been the wiser choice.
By Andreas Fasel


Artistic Schumann Festival
Rheinische Post, 12th July 2004

“An oratorio, not for a prayer-hall, but for hilarious people”, this is how Robert Schumann described “Paradise and the Peri”. It is an oriental fairy tale about salvation and tells of the suffering and salvation of a Peri. This already seems to invite a going against rigid forms in a hilarious way and turn a traditional concert recital into an event. “A staged Oratorio”, read the souvenir programme of the 8th Schumann Festival in Düsseldorf, and the highlight of the prestigious festival it should turn out to be.

A successful experiment

The enthusiastic applause at the end of the spectacle ought to have considerably relieved the festival direction of its tension. It had taken a number of risks, one of the major ones being the conversion of the Tonhalle concert hall without being sure whether the space might actually be suited to it. The experiment came off, even though the patient, Schumann’s Oratorio, was not too much touched upon by this spectacle of dance, acrobatics, and video film in its essence.

Director Gregor Seyffert decided against the singers’ acting, and had them sing like in a concert oratorio. The fabulous singers of the music association, too, had to stay where they are usually to be found, i.e., behind the orchestra. All wore costumes and small hats not unlike bikers in the twenties, alternating between black, red and white, and had their faces painted. Even part of the orchestra wore hats, and John Fiore certainly wore his with stoicism.

The story, however, was told by dancers, five of them floating in the dome as angels, and Seyffert himself, who perfectly tailored the part of the Peri to his talents. The androgynous fairy tale figure is a real something for this inspired dancer. Acting in between Heaven’s ring, which was floating through the dome, and the stage, he attracted the audience’s attention with his enormous, powerful presence even when he was only spectacularly dangling in the air like an acrobat.

Designer Gottfried Helnwein created one-to-one images for the story. Heaven was above, rotten Earth below. If somebody cried, raindrops fell to the ground, while death was symbolised by bloody trickles on a video screen. In his video film, Helnwein saw no problem in using postcard clichés: sun down, a rose bed, praying children.

Gregor Seyffert as the Peri was constantly on the move between earthly tests and his attempts to float to Paradise. There were convincing moments, but all in all it was impossible to get rid of the feeling that this was a circus spectacle. There was simply too much to be seen, while Schumann’s music, which does not offer too many loud gestures anyway, was basically turned into a beautiful sound carpet for unfolding
stunning images. Thus the outstanding soloists, too, were relegated to be mere sound providers.

Jörg Waschinski’s soprano created an interesting parallel to the embodiment of the title role. And Markus Schäfer’s glamorous tenor as the story-teller must be praised just as well as Alison Browner’s hearty mezzo soprano and Anke Krabbe’s very clear ‘virgin’ soprano. A sensitive Fiore gave Schumann’s Oratorio kid glove treatment and elicited enchanting lyrical sounds from the Symphoniker Orchestra. Much applause for all involved.

By Regine Müller

Heaven cannot wait
Westdeutsche Zeitung, 12th July 2004

Gregor Seyffert, Gottfried Helnwein and Düsseldorfer Symphoniker Orchestra stage Schumann’s Oratorio “Paradise and the Peri” at Düsseldorf Tonhalle Concert Hall

Düsseldorf. Seen from a musical perspective, the Peri ascends to Heaven, to become an integral part of it, to the accompaniment of a jubilant choir. As regards the staging of the scene, this creature, which strayed between Heaven and Earth, hangs motionless in the air. After the last chord had been struck, the Peri dashed to the floor again. The dancer and choreographer Gregor Seyffert visualised an atheist reading of the fairy tale “Paradise and the Peri” which had been turned into an Oratorio by Robert Schumann. The story of the sinning child, which is only accepted with the ‘skies dearest tribute’ into Paradise, goes back to “Lalla Rookh” by Thomas Moore (1779-1852). It focuses on the phenomenon of true repentance, and the tears that go with it.

These tears are the Peri’s ticket into paradise. While the Düsseldorfer Symphoniker Orchestra, the municipal music association of Düsseldorf and a number of soloists conducted by musical director John Fiore rendered a decent performance, Seyffert, who also danced the Peri, and artist Gottfried Hellwein commented upon the action with powerful, sometimes disturbing images.

The concert hall’s dome served as Heaven, whereas the auditorium was changed into a human stage. An illuminated white ring served as a cloud’s hole and gateway to Heaven, the sides of which were guarded by angels. Behind the choir, a video screen showed Helwein’s stylised, partly surreal images. There was blood flowing, running or splashing, yet not like in a massacre, but as an abstract red liquid. It also spilled out of the children’s mouths on being united in a kiss.

All this was thrilling and exciting, but it also brought a lot of superficial restlessness with it. The choreographic comment prevented any chance of inner contemplation. Some parts of the event resulted in involuntary comedy and endangered the symbolic construction, which had a considerable height of fall. More often than not, some of the sound effects cut through the music. Irrespective of this, the production turned out to be exciting throughout.

As the Peri, Seyffert gave vivid expression to a suffering creation and its eternal search. But even the final salvation seemed to be questioned here. When the Peri’s transfigured body hang motionless from a steel rope while the choir was in jubilation and the audience frantically applauding, this undoubtedly created an effect of uneasiness. The very well prepared Düsseldorf music association has to be praised. It fulfilled both its vocal and performance tasks in a sovereign manner. John Fiore and his orchestra, too, created suspense.

Among the soloists, many glamorous voices shone. Soprano Jörg Waschinksi as the Peri was a stunning male soprano with a very feminine effect, yet during the big female part, he sounded like an overstrained female singer. A highlight in terms of voices certainly was the mezzo soprano singer Alison Browner as the angel.

By Lars Wallerang

By Trapeze to Paradise
NRZ, 12th July 2004

Tonhalle Concert Hall, Highlight of the Schumann Festival: a scenic version of “Paradise and the Peri”

The Peri hangs exhausted in Heaven. After three attempts to please the heavenly hosts, the aerial spirit finally makes it. As had to be expected, a jubilant choir started to sing, but apparently the tests which the guardians of the gate way to Heaven had asked their brother or sister to pass had been too difficult. Gregor Seyffert interpreted Schumann’s oratorio “Paradise and the Peri” with scepticism, if not pessimism, at least not with as conciliatory tones as in the original. He staged it for the first time as the highlight of the Schumann Festival at Düsseldorfer Tonhalle Concert Hall.

Star dancer Gregor Seyffert and Gottfried Helmwein created a mystical circus spectacle about the stony way to eternity, thereby turning the Tonhalle Concert hall into an opera arena. This suited the original, for as early as in 1841 Schumann was looking for a story for an opera, but then went on to compose a worldly Oratorio. However, it was meant ‘not for praying, but for hilarious people’.

Angels in the dome

Thus Seyffert turned the concert hall’s dome into the gateway to Heaven. The angels were enthroned on a circle of clouds looking like a chandelier and observed how down on Earth people were fighting for love, vice and sin. The Peri, which was driven out of the Garden of Eden, landed on a platform. Looking for the holy tribute, clad in white sheets and walking on stilts, the fallen angel strayed to and fro. Yet the last drop of blood of a young Indian fighting for the freedom of his country did not do the trick, just as much as the last breath of a maiden who sacrificed herself for her lover failed, who had fallen victim to the plague. Only the third tribute, the remorseful tear of a sinner who on seeing an innocent child repents his wrong doing, delivered the Peri.

The three stations of the guiltlessly guilty ghost unfolded like an expressive music and dance theatre on a trapeze. Again and again, Gregor Seyffert as the Peri dashed down from the concert hall’s dome to the humans in weightless grace. He was accompanied by two angel acrobats clad in white, who received him and sent him back twice. The wanderer and searcher between Heaven and Earth fought for his blissful happiness up to point of exhaustion. However, Seyffert did not make it clear whether the androgynous being really reached his or her goal.

The production was dramatically suggestive, spectacular and certainly not boring for a second. This was guaranteed not only by the bodily presence and expressiveness of one of the world’s most extraordinary dancers, who in his early forties continues to combine acrobatic and athletic powers with an elf-like flexibility. This was enhanced through sometimes, trashy effects and video installations of the famous and notorious painter of children, Gottfried Helnwein.

He illustrated the stations on the Peri’s way to Paradise on a huge screen. There was blood flowing in geometrical patterns over a white canvas, an unceasing rain of tears, and the kiss of two children with ash grey hair. This might have been meant to be symbolic, or surrealist, but also seemed alienating, at least a far cry from Schumann.

Singers remained invisible

With their masks and turbans, the singers remained invisible. Jörg Waschinski (soprano) as the Peri enchanted with his timbre, intonation, easiness and attack and excellently suited the romantic oratorio drama. The tenor Markus Schäfer as the story-teller,
soprano Anke Krabbe as the virgin and mezzo soprano Alison Browner as the angel with their finely intonated voices came nearest to a traditional Schumann sound.

Musicians behind masks

Worthy of Schumann’s, fascinating and transparent were also the orchestra and the singers of the municipal music association. Why, however, musicians, the choir and conductor John Fiore did have to wear masks and black, red and white grail garments, is for the Gods to know. Unfortunately, they are known to remain silent.
By Michael-Georg Müller

Robert Schumann: „Paradise and the Peri“
koeglerjournal 2003/2004, 11th July 2004

Two years after the Willis had made their debut on the ballet stage in “Giselle”, they were followed by, well, not exactly sisters, but rather, first cousins from the Orient called Peris in 1843. These aerial creatures came twofold: first in a ballet called “La Peri” based on a libretto by Théophile Gautier and choreographed by Jean Coralli to a music by Friedrich Bergmüller. It was shown at the Paris opera starring Carlotta Grisi and Lucien Petipa. Almost at the same time, they appeared in Robert Schumann’s Oratorio “Paradise and the Peri”, which consisted of three parts, and was premiered at Leipzig Gewandhaus Concert Hall. Both works, which share nothing but the title heroine, were very popular in the 19th century. The ballet was lost, but who knows whether it will not be rediscovered one day by Pierre Lacotte. Today it exists in a totally different form to music by Paul Dukas. It was choreographed for the first time for Paris as well by Ivan Clustine in 1912.

In contrast, Schumann’s Oratorio is a rather rare occurrence today. At thirty three years of age, he considered it to be very important. Its structure is reminiscent of song, it is very lyrical, and there are no recitatives. It is an ‘Oratorio not for a praying-hall, but for hilarious people’. It tells the story of one of these creatures who, after having failed, is forced to leave Paradise and now waste away with longing for the celestial home. An angel promises her that she might return after having found ‘Heaven’s dearest tribute’. Three times she sets out to search for it, and in doing so, meets a brave young man dying in a battlefield and a bride who shares the death of her beloved. But only the remorseful tear of a repentant sinner convinces her heavenly companions, who allow the Peri back into their circle again. Now the work was staged again in the framework of the Düsseldorf Schumann Festival 2004 at Düsseldorf Tonhalle Concert Hall in a scenic version of vast dimensions. It was realised in a collaboration of Gregor Seyffert and Gottfried Helnwein, who was responsible for the stage setting, costumes, films and masks. The gigantic event included a huge choir, a number of soloists, singers, dancers and aerial acrobats, as well as Seyffert himself as the Peri, which originally is a soprano part and was sung by Jörg Waschinski here. It clearly impressed the audience though on the one hand, charming music, and on the other hand, the way it was staged. For most of the time, the scene was set in the air with five angels hanging on elastic ropes.

Seyffert, too, hung on a rope, flung from the dome, was hurled up again and again thereby performed the most stunning caprioles. Helnwein’s costumes turned him into an androgynous being. In the beginning, he wore super pointed shoes which would have been the envy of all the ballerinas in the world. Unfortunately, it was impossible to stand in them.

This was a marathon part, which Seyffert sustained for more than a hundred minutes. Among the other dancers were Swen Ruschka as the young man, Peter Luppa as a gruesome general, a very expressive Raimondo Rebeck as a young man struck by the plague, Heike Keller as the virgin and Goyo Montero as a man. The whole show was highly spectacular because of its aerial and ground choreographies. Thinking of similar scenes during the revues of Berlin’s Friedrichstadtpalast, however, I can very well imagine the aerial parts to be choreographed with even more imagination. In any case it was a truly worthwhile encounter, which was overwhelming with its rich music and lavish stage effects. It really spoke for the young Schumann, and for a touring company of the times of the Circus à la Max Reinhardt. This, however, will be prevented by the immense costs involved. Reading the almost unending cast list however, I missed a proof of a technical insurance certificate.
Horst Koegler

Der Opernfreund / Der Merker, 10th July 2004

Premiere: 9 July, 2004

When Robert Schumann spoke of his ‘greatest and best work’, he was referring to his Œuvre “Paradise and the Peri”. The poem for solo voices, choir and orchestra was premiered at Leipzig Gewandhaus Concert Hall on 4 December, 1843. To the composer, it was a kind of opera-oratorio. Schumann envisaged a ‘new genre for the concert hall’, which is difficult to define in formal terms. What emerged was a gigantic work transcending through traditional art genres, yet without a clear separation of recitatives and arias, in which song, however, does play a substantial part.

The ‘read thread’ to connect the 26 numbers of “Paradise and the Peri” is controlled by the choir in most of the cases, which fulfils an extraordinary variety of functions. It may comment upon situations and the atmosphere, share the grief in a lamento, burst into celestial praise, and finally ends the work with a sacred ‘how delightful, oh, what bliss’.

Schumann surprised his audience with new sound colours. He used valve trumpets, ophykleides, i.e. predecessors of bass tubas, as well as harps, and won his audiences through enhancing the percussion instruments by cymbals, drums and triangles. This resulted in so far unheard of sound dimensions of a depth which bordered on Wagner’s “Parsival”.

Text and story go back to the oriental poem “Lallah Rookh” by Thomas Moore. Especially its second part tells of a Peri, an elf-like fairy. In short, the story goes like this: A Peri is promised to be allowed to return to Paradise if she procures what is dearest to Heaven. She tries the last drop of blood of a young man fighting for his threatened country, and the last breath of a maiden who sacrifices herself for her lover, who had fallen victim to the plague. But only the remorseful tears from a sworn sinner shed in view of a young boy at play and prayer open the gateway to Heaven for her again.

The rather worldly Oratorio indeed has the impetus of a romantic opera. It has been shunned or neglected by cultural authorities for more than a century, which undoubtedly not only has to be attributed to the vast dimensions of the work, but also to the difficulties encountered when it comes to conveying the meaning of a fairy tale like this theses days. Added to this, there is a “Third Reich” history to it, which implied a weird popularity and reinterpretation of the work. For the 8th International Schumann Festival, a congenial team was brought together to realise a complete stage version at the old, dignified Tonhalle Concert Hall.

Gregor Seyffert, a dance icon loaded with praise, and Gottfried Helnwein, an internationally renowned artist and stage designer, came up with a highly intelligent concept for the oratorio, which relied heavily on dance, but also comprised whatever means a modern, multimedia stage design might offer. Consequently, the audience’s eyes almost popped out of their heads. What with all the media activities, one might almost forget the enchanting, beautiful music, and singing.

The artists really pulled out all the stops. This included film (a huge screen behind the choir), breathtaking rope acrobatics, other acrobatic feats including the State Circus School of Kiev, and a stunning lighting design by R. Wenzel, which comprised fire, water, and smoke effects. All this formed part of an almost magic air-to-ground choreography by I. German, G. Montero, and G. Seyffert, and provides for a fabulous music theatre event. Again and again, there was Gregor Seyffert, who as the Peri exceeded all dimensions of modern dance theatre. He flew, sailed, tumbled, fell and danced. This was movement with an almost self-effacing authenticity. Seyffert carried the emotions of this shining figure of hope into the bright dome of the Tonhalle Concert Hall, and slid almost weightlessly like a feather to the breathtaking sounds of Schumann.

With more than 500 people involved, it is impossible to mention the names of all who contributed to this unique Gesamtkunstwerk. Yet beside the gorgeous soloists Jörg Waschinski (Peri), Markus Schäfer (story-teller), Alison Browner (angel), Anke Krabbe (virgin), Andreas Post (young man), Raimund Nolte (Mann), Karl Petersen (Gazna), Theresa Kronthaler and Anja-Nina Bahrmann, the precise playing of The Düsseldorf Symphoniker Orchestra and the bravura achievements of the municipal music association, musical director John Fiore must be especially hailed. He is the man who kept this extremely complex music and stage event together with total command and gigantic commitment. Artistically speaking, he made the production one of the most successful evenings in the history of the Tonhalle Concert Hall, and in the history of staging this work.

Storming, unceasing applause by an enthusiastic Düsseldorf audience for an evening which is unlikely to be easily forgotten. This was an example of lively music theatre, which, unchallenged, not only stole the glory of Deutsche Oper am Rhein, which presently enjoys a period of profound hibernation, but proved that Düsseldorf may well offer first class art. Why not more often?
Peter Bilsing






"surprised recognition"
January 6, 2004

On nuclearheart's author page Jan 06, 11:38

Thanks for turning me on to Gottfried Helnwein. Viewing the work really is a sort of "surprised recognition". I really liked "Ninth
November Night" - 1988. What a collection! Thanks again edide.





The Greatest Album Covers That Never Were


[ Arts Index | Silicon Valley | Metroactive Home | Archives ]

Mouthing Off: Anita Kunz imagines a Talking Heads album cover that never was.

A new show at SJSU recalls the days when album covers were an art form

By Gary Singh

WITH FULL support from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, graphic designer Craig Butler and music archivist Michael Ochs launched a quirky but mind-blowing project: "The Greatest Album Covers That Never Were." They convinced 100 long-established designers to create hypothetical album covers for their favorite recording artists. The show originally debuted at the Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio, and now a portion of it runs in the Natalie and James Thompson Gallery at San Jose State University.

With the rise of CDs and the ubiquity of iPods, LP covers are almost a forgotten art form. Before music videos came about, record covers constituted the only visual connection one had with the music, and many people really did judge a record by its cover sometimes. Folks identified with an album through a singular image. And with the resurgence of Space Age Bachelor Pad tunes and the "Incredibly Strange Music" phenomenon, many folks are rifling through thrift-store bins to purchase old LPs just for the covers.

So the record cover as canvas triumphantly returns, and the artists participating in the show run the gamut. Josh Agle (Shag) contributed his trademark swinger's lifestyle illustration for a Sinatra cover. John Dismukes supplied a staggering 4-by-r4-foot mural of a gothic-tech Ozzy Osbourne cover. Spend a few minutes looking at this one—it's a doozy.

Neal Ashby provided an alternative version of Led Zeppelin II, a plain white album with a lemon on the front—a la Warhol's famous Velvet Underground cover. On Ashby's Zeppelin cover are the words "Squeeze softly and see," with an arrow pointing toward the lemon, referencing "The Lemon Song."

Each cover also has a story behind it. Abbie Baron Morganstein delivered a photo of two turtles doing the wild thing. She intended it to be a Metallica cover, but Ochs suggested it should be a Turtles album instead. It's called, Happy Together: The Best of the Turtles.

On a more controversial note, legendary Austrian artist Gottfried Helnwein collaborated with Marilyn Manson to produce a cover with Manson next to a little girl holding a shotgun. Novelist Kurt Vonnegut also painted a Phish cover, and Sebastian Kruger drew a caricature of Pete Townshend. Other artists involved include John Van Hamersveld, Art Snyder, Tim Gabor, Dean Chamberlain and Ralph Steadman.

"Record covers are fine art," said Butler, who originally designed Frank Zappa's 200 Motels album and created a Tom Petty cover for the show. "Artists love doing covers. The freedom there is just enormous."

What's more, all of the artists produced their work for free. Butler and Ochs didn't make a dime either. It was purely for the love of the project. "Working with so many different artists on a project like this is a delightful, memorable experience," Butler said. "It opened the door for so many other things."

One of those other things might be a discussion on the future of CDs and the potential demise of cover art in general. Butler and Ochs conversed about the subject when they came to SJSU for the show's opening. They argued that since many younger folks are downloading music and organizing their own compilations anyway, why not make the artwork and the packaging downloadable as well? Cult author Chuck Palahniuk already has fans designing their own book covers for his novels, so why not do the same for the musicians?

"Basically I've been talking to Apple iTunes," Ochs explained. "I suggested that instead of scrolling through a long list of Jimi Hendrix selections, it would be nice to have a visual component, and on top of that, generic J-cards. So you can make your own CD covers. You could expand it by making liner notes available and other things like that. If you're doing a Best of Jimi Hendrix, you could have 50 images to choose from."

So don't think CDs are dead yet. A wide-open area lies untapped here.

The Greatest Album Covers That Never Were runs through Sept. 24 at the Natalie and James Thompson Gallery at San Jose State University.

[ Santa Cruz | Metroactive Central | Archives ]








Ingried Brugger, Heike Eipeldauer, Gerald Matt, Thomas Mießgang, Florian Steininger (Hg.)

Superstars von Warhol bis Madonna. Das Prinzip Prominenz


Superstars - mit allen ihren Facetten - werden vom 4. November 2005 bis 22. Februar 2006 in der Kunsthalle Wien und dem BA-CA Kunstforum in freundschaftlicher Kooperation präsentiert. Eine sehenswerte Ausstellung und ein lesenswerter Katalog, dessen attraktive Aufmachung ihn zur optischen Prominenz verhilft und dem brisanten Inhalt gerecht wird.

Was sind "Superstars" und was bedeutet "Prominenz" sind die zentralen Fragen des gelungenen Projektes. Ein echtes Reizthema, dem auch in der Publikation exzellent nachgespürt wird. Ein Buch das zur intensiven Auseinandersetzung anregt und für Diskussionsstoff sorgt.

Das Prinzip der Prominenz in der Kunst ist es, die Kunst zu beherrschen prominent zu agieren. Die Bündelung von Aufmerksamkeit ist die Fähigkeit, die Kinder am meisten trainieren - bis es ihnen meist geschlechtsspezifisch mehr oder minder aberzogen wird. Es gilt: Wer sich am prominentesten und/oder permanentesten bemerkbar macht, dem wird - so oder so - viel Aufmerksamkeit zu teil. Wobei diese Prominenz nicht notwendigerweise auch mit Kompetenz einhergehen muss. Wie vor allem spätestens in Schulen bemerkt wird. Meist müssen sich die Unterrichtenden mehr mit penetrant prominenten Burschen auseinandersetzen, die dadurch die meist kompetenteren aber weniger Aufmerksamkeit einfordernden Mädchen an den Rand drängen. Zuletzt bleibt langfristig weniger die Kompetenz als die Permanenz in den Gedächtnissen aller haften. Eine Beobachtung, die sich vor allem bei Klassentreffen nach langen Jahren in aller Deutlichkeit zeigt. Das dieses Erfolgsprinzip der überwiegend inkompetenten Prominenz sich nicht nur bei der Wahl der Klassensprecher bemerkbar macht, ist Basis des gewaltigen Eisbergs historischer und aktueller Politkatastrophen.

Ganz im Sinne von "Kaisers neue Kleider" sind die Erfolgsgeschichten etlicher industrieller Marken zu beurteilen. Produkte in Verbindung mit Prominenten mutieren zu Superstars der grauen Massen. Die Identifikationssucht der nicht zelebrierten "Normalbürger" mit "ihren" Superstars, entspricht den gleichen unausgelebten Sehnsüchten wie sie alle Nachahmungstäter und Trittbrettfahrer haben, denen die Qualität der Individualität abgeht. Markenfetischismus und Produkterotik beflügeln daher genauso zur künstlerischen Auseinandersetzung, wie die dahinter steckende Realität und der abkassierende Medienmoloch. Wenn Allgegenwart die Superstars auszeichnet, sind diese eigentlich die neuen Götter der Gesellschaft des Medienzeitalters. Denn sie sind für alle anderen die Hoffnung auf das vermeintlich Greifbare in der virtuellen Medienwelt.

Der Superstar unter den Künstlern Andy Warhol sagte, dass in Zukunft jeder für 15 Minuten weltberühmt sein wird. In Anbetracht diverser Spanner-TV Formate, in denen sich allerlei Leute exhibitionieren, waren diese Worte mehr als nur prophetisch.

Blicke auf die Superstars unter den Künstlern, den Superstars unter den Kunstwerken sowie den Superstars unter den Themen eröffnen etliche neue Perspektiven. Selbstinszenierung der Künstler, "brand names" und Logokultur sind weitere Inhalte, denen ebenso analytisch wie spannend und in künstlerischer Auseinandersetzung nachgespürt wird.

Die Publikation ist ein echter Superstar, während die Ausstellung dagegen nur für kurze Zeit Prominenz erhält. In der permanenten Nachhaltigkeit des Katalogs begegnet man:

Christian Ludwig Attersee, Matthew Barney, Joseph Beuys, Marc Bijl, Michael Blum, Fernando Botero, Slater Bradley, George Brecht, Candice Breitz, Sophie Calle, Maurizio Cattelan, Casale Chatwick, Christo, Jennifer Dalton, Robert Doisneau, Felix Droese, Marcel Duchamps, William Eggleston, Tracey Emin, EVA & ADELE, Justin Faunce, Nina Fischer / Maroan El Sani, Silvie Fleury, Jacqueline Fraser, Dieter Fuchs, Ron Galella, Marcus Geiger, Gil & Moti, Gilbert & George, Wayne Gonzales, Douglas Gordon, Rodney Graham, G.R.A.M., Andreas Gursky, Philippe Halsman, Kevin Hanley, Gottfried Helnwein, Matthias Herrmann, Volker Hildebrandt, Richard Hoeck/John Miller, Jenny Holzer, Jonathan Horowitz, Jörg Immendorff, Alison Jackson, Kurt Kauper, Steven Klein, Zenita Komad, Jeff Koons, Inez van Lamsweerde + VINOODH MATADIN, Matthieu Laurette, Louise Lawler, Annie Leibovitz, Markus Lüpertz, Urs Lüthi, Marcin Maciejowski, René Magritte, Kasimir Malewitsch, Pierro Manzoni, Paul McCarthy, Adam McEwen, Patrick McMullan, Jonathan Meese, Bjarne Melgaard, Duane Michals, Yan Pei Ming, Yasumasa Morimura, Helmut Newton, Claes Oldenburg, Dennis Oppenheim, Orlan, Nam June Paik, Elizabeth Peyton, Paul Pfeiffer, Pablo Picasso, Richard Prince, Robert Rauschenberg, Man Ray, Mimmo Rotella, Ed Rusha, Tom Sachs, Karin Sander, Edie Sedgwick, Jim Shaw, Cindy Sherman, Georgina Starr, Bert Stern, Sturtevant, Eve Sussman, Una Szeemann, Sam Taylor-Wood, Wolfgang Tillmans, Endre Tót, Adrian Tranquilli, Gavin Turk, Piotr Uklanski, Timm Ulrichs, Francesco Vezzoli, Andy Warhol, Julian Wasser, Weegee, TJ Wilcox, Johannes Wohnseifer.

© S. Strohschneider-Laue 05.11.2005





Gotffried Helnwein
December 2005

Metamorfosis del desfragmento: Silencio
.. se despejan los recuerdos y se evaden los miedos.


Gotffried Helnwein
Artista Visual. Panoptico de los deseos mas oscuros del hombre, de lo que muchos no queremos ver de nosotros mismos.(Observa parte de su trabajo en "Fotos")

Photo album

Gottfried Helnwein( Drawings: 1era Parte)
24 pictures
Updated 12/28/2005

Gottfried H.(Watercolors)
18 pictures
Updated 12/19/2005

Gottfried H.(Oils and Acrylic on Canvas)
15 pictures
Updated 12/20/2005





Gottfried Helnwein - Beautiful Children

Meine Arbeit hat immer polarisiert. Ich habe immer Leute gehabt, die begeistert und fasziniert waren und ich habe immer Leute gehabt, die mich gehasst haben“, fasst Gottfried Helnwein die Reaktionen auf sein vielschichtiges Schaffen zusammen. Eine repräsentative Auswahl der so starke Emotionen auslösenden Werke steht im Mittelpunkt der Ausstellung, die das Wilhelm-Busch-Museum Hannover jetzt dem international renommierten Künstler widmet.

Gezeigt werden knapp 60 großformatige Gemälde, Handzeichnungen und digitale Fotografien. Die meisten dieser Bilder waren bisher noch nicht in Deutschland ausgestellt. Sie wurden in Zusammenarbeit mit der Ludwig Galerie Schloss Oberhausen und dem Künstler ausgewählt, dessen Ausstellung The Child (Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco, 31.7-28.11.04) erst kürzlich vom San Francisco Chronicle zur besten Museumsausstellung des Jahres 2004 gewählt wurde.

Im Schaffen des 1948 in Wien geborenen Gottfried Helnwein durchdringen sich - wie in keinem anderen Werk zeitgenössischer Kunst - die Themen und Bildsprachen von Hoch- und Trivialkunst. Der an der Wiener Akademie ausgebildete Maler bekennt, von der Rockmusik und Walt Disney mehr beeinflusst zu sein als von Mozart und Leonardo da Vinci. In den letzten Jahren hat sich zwischen ihm und dem amerikanischen Rockmusiker und Performancekünstler Marilyn Manson eine kongeniale Zusammenarbeit entwickelt: „Ein Künstler, der nicht provoziert, wird unsichtbar. Kunst, die keine starken Reaktionen auslöst, hat keinen Wert. Helnwein hat das verinnerlicht und entspricht damit genau dem Kern meiner Musik, sagt Manson. „Unsere Zusammenarbeit erschöpft sich nicht darin, dass ein Künstler einem Musiker ein Cover für sein Album macht. Wir schaffen zusammen Kunst, die unseren Gemütszustand wiedergibt. Die in der Ausstellung vertretenen Manson-Darstellungen veranschaulichen den Inhalt dieser Äußerung mehr als deutlich.

Ein zentraler Aspekt im Schaffen von Helnwein ist das christliche Thema der Leidensfähigkeit des Menschen, das er in schockierender Direktheit am Kind darstellt. „Die Helden meiner Bilder sind oft Kinder“, sagt der in Irland lebende Künstler. „Ich sehe die Welt am liebsten durch die Augen eines Kindes. Jedes Erziehungssystem zu allen Zeiten und in allen Gesellschaften hatte immer nur ein Ziel: Menschen gefügig zu machen, sie zu brechen.“ Sowohl in alltäglichen Szenen wie in historisierenden Bildern stellt er das Kind als das eigentliche Opfer unserer Zeit dar. Da findet sich beispielsweise die Madonna mit Kind inmitten einer Riege von SS-Schergen, und plötzlich stellen sich dem Betrachter die Fragen nach Schuld und Unschuld neu.

Helnweins künstlerische Beschäftigung mit dem Kind begann in den frühen 70’er Jahren. In den in dieser Zeit entstandenen hyperrealistischen Aquarellen, die in penibler, fotorealistischer Detailtreue angelegt sind, stellt er satirische Verfremdungen von Kindern dar, die von geschwürartigen Narben entstellt oder von brutalen Zwingen und Spangen gefoltert und durch Entblößung gedemütigt werden. Mit diesen schockierenden Kinderbildnissen bricht er nicht nur mit der idyllischen Vorstellung des vom Leben unberührten Kindes, sondern öffnet damit auch gleichzeitig den Blick zurück auf eine kunstgeschichtliche Tradition, die von den bestialischen Darstellungen des Bethlehemitischen Kindermordes am Kreuzgangportal von Notre Dame in Paris über Giottos Fresken in der Arenakapelle in Padua bis hin zu Picassos toten Kindern in Guernica und Leichenhaus reicht. Diese Bildtradition stellt bis zu Helnweins Bildern das Kind als von der ganzen Last des Lebens und der Bedrohung durch den Tod betroffen dar.

Kein Künstler hat in der modernen Kunst das Spannungsfeld zwischen Malerei und Fotografie so tief erkundet wie Gottfried Helnwein. Früh hatte er die gestalterische Energie der Fotografie, des Rock 'n' Roll und des Comic Strips als elementare Kunstform des 20. Jahrhunderts in sich aufgenommen. Die suggestive Wirkung seiner Arbeiten beruht vor allem auf ihrer irritierenden ästhetischen Form. Denn auf den ersten Blick lassen uns seine Bilder im Unklaren darüber, ob es sich um Fotografien oder Malerei handelt: Was wie fotografierte Wirklichkeit erscheint, erweist sich bei genauerem Hinsehen als gemalt. Seine thematischen Bilder über die deutsche Geschichte und die Katastrophen unserer Zeit erscheinen uns deshalb ebenso wie seine Portraits bedeutender Persönlichkeiten von Arno Breker bis Andy Warhol, Che Guevara und Marilyn Manson irritierend vieldeutig: Schein und Sein, Maske und Gesicht, Bild und Wirklichkeit verschwimmen bis zur Unkenntlichkeit.

Begleitbuch zur Ausstellung:
Gottfried Helnwein: Beautiful Children (Oberhausen 2005, 136 Seiten, mit zahlr. farbigen u. s/w Abb., 24,50 EUR)

Gespräche über die Ausstellung
Gottfried Helnwein: Beautiful Children mit:

Prof. Dr. Christian Pfeiffer
Leiter des Kriminologischen Forschungsinstitutes Niedersachsen
Sonntag, 24. April, 18 Uhr

Landesbischöfin Dr. Margot Käßmann und Dr. Ralph Ludwig,
Redaktion Religion und Gesellschaft, NDR Landesfunkhaus Hannover
Dienstag, 3. Mai., 18 Uhr

Wilfried Schulz
Schauspiel-Intendant des Niedersächsischen Staatstheaters
Donnerstag, 19. Mai, 18 Uhr

Das Wilhelm-Busch-Museum Hannover / Deutsches Museum für Karikatur und kritische Grafik wird institutionell gefördert durch das Kulturbüro der Landeshauptstadt Hannover.


aus dem Wilhelm-Busch-Museum

Prominente Besucher
in der Ausstellung Gottfried Helnwein: Beautiful Children

Nach Bundestagsvizepräsidentin Antje Vollmer und dem Rockstar Klaus Meine von den Scorpions, besuchten mittlerweile auch die Publizistin Alice Schwarzer sowie der bekannte Rocksänger Marius Müller-Westernhagen die Gottfried-Helnwein-Ausstellung im Wilhelm-Busch-Museum. Während Alice Schwarzer von Museumsdirektor Dr. Hans Joachim Neyer durch die Ausstellung geführt wurde, übernahm diese Aufgabe bei Marius Müller-Westernhagen Gottfried Helnwein persönlich, der am vergangenen Sonntag kurz vor seiner Abreise in die USA noch einmal ins Wilhelm-Busch-Museum gekommen war.





Gottfried Helnwein-Ausstellung: Beautiful Children
January 2005

Wilhelm-Busch-Museum Hannover / Deutsches Museum für Karikatur und kritische Grafik

KULTUR lebendig

Im Schaffen von Gottfried Helnwein durchdringen sich - wie in keinem anderen Werk zeitgenössischer Kunst - die Themen und Bildsprachen von Hoch- und Trivialkunst. Der an der Wiener Kunstakademie ausgebildete Maler bekennt, von der Rockmusik und Walt Disney mehr beeinflusst zu sein als von Mozart und Leonardo da Vinci.

Es ist vor allem das christliche Thema der Leidensfähigkeit des Menschen, das Helnwein in schockierender Direktheit am Kind als dem eigentlichen Opfer unserer Zeit darstellt: "Das Kind verkörpert den unschuldigen, wehrlosen, der Gewalt ausgelieferten Menschen. Als unschuldiges ,Lichtkind', dessen Verletzungen an Kopf und Händen Lichtstrahlen wie selbstleuchtende Stigmen aussenden, wird das Kind zum Märtyrer, zur Dulde- und Erlöserfigur." (Peter Gorsen). Als erwachsener Betrachter stehen wir diesen Bildern gleichsam als Täter gegenüber, die Bilder stellen uns immer wieder neu die Fragen nach unserer Mitverantwortung und unserer Mitschuld.

Die suggestive Wirkung der Bilder Helnweins beruht vor allem auf ihrer irritierenden ästhetischen Form. Denn auf den ersten Blick lassen uns seine Bilder im Unklaren darüber, ob es sich um Fotografien oder Malerei handelt: Was wie fotografierte Wirklichkeit aussieht, erweist sich beim genaueren Hinsehen als gemalt.

Seine thematischen Bilder über die deutsche Geschichte und die Katastrophen unserer Zeit erscheinen uns deshalb ebenso wie seine Porträts bedeutender Persönlichkeiten von Arno Breker bis Andy Warhol, Michael Jackson und Marilyn Manson verwirrend vieldeutig: Schein und Sein, Maske und Gesicht, Bild und Wirklichkeit verschwimmen bis zur Unkenntlichkeit.

Die meisten Bilder dieser Ausstellung sind in Deutschland noch nicht gezeigt worden. Sie wurden gemeinsam mit dem Wilhelm Busch Museum, Hannover, aus den Werken einer umfassenden Helnwein-Retrospektive ausgewählt, die in den vergangenen Jahren in Los Angeles, Dublin, St. Petersburg, Krems und St. Francisco gezeigt wurde.

AsKI-Newsletter 1/2005

Vorheriger Artikel

Nächster Artikel
Revision: 20/06/2005 - 17:31 - © AsKI e.V.





Holy Crap!
October 29, 2005


Holy Crap!
How is this possible?!?!?! Believe it or not this is oil and acrylic on canvas. Check out more amazing work from this awesome (yet somewhat twisted artist) by the name of Gottfried Helnwein.


posted by Leif at 3:51 AM

Goro said...

Yikes...That is indeed amazing! I saw similar oil paint quality of a japanese guy. Check out Yoshida's Art Gallery.

And here is another link to a japanese artist who paints mostly in oekaki, the java online painting tool...pretty amazing stuff. link
we live in a crazy world... ^^v
9:23 PM
Kimotion said...

There's NO way this is a painting. But if I say that, I'm implying that there are limitations in art. Bad...BAD!
7:22 AM
Aaron Schultz said...

Hey there Lief. Ya, this guy is insane. I'm still clueless as to how he does it. I had to write a paper on him for an art history class and was lucky enough to find some of his work in a gallery here in San Fran.

Let me say that to see his works "live" and in front of you is something to behold. Slightly disturbing at times, but the attention to detail is unfathomable.

Not sure if he's got some work in NYC, I'm sure he does, but if you get the chance, go check it out. You won't regret it!
12:46 PM
Ali Tezel said...

I am gonna go against the flow here and say "what is the point , just take a photograph"
3:30 PM

Post a Comment

My Photo
Name:Leif Jeffers
Location:White Plains, New York, United States




Gottfried Helnwein is the real deal!
January 19, 2006

jakey padraic z dustin reinz ([info]princepadraic) wrote,
@ 2006-01-19 03:11:00
Previous Entry Add to memories! Next Entry
Current mood: entranced

Gottfried Helnwein is the real deal!


but a little annoyed that there is hardly ever boys in this theme of art. i have to make my own.

"In 'The Darker Side of Playland', the endearing cuteness of beloved toys and cartoon characters turns menacing and monstrous. Much of the work has the quality of childhood nightmares. In those dreams, long before any adult understanding of the specific pains and evils that live holds, the familiar and comforting objects and images of a child's world are rent with something untoward. For children, not understanding what really to be afraid of, these dreams portend some pain and disturbance lurking into the landscape."

(Post a new comment)

2006-01-19 05:16 pm UTC (link)
I saw Helnwein's exhibit, "The Child," at the Legion of Honor last year. It was pretty harrowing, and very cool. Actually, the background image on my cell phone right now is a creepy Mickey Mouse image that I took a photo of at the exhibit. :D

(Reply to this)





A razorblade romance...

November 12, 2005

Crónicas de una gótica neurótica
Anotaciones de las anécdotas que me vayan sucediendo a lo largo del tiempo, noticias relacionadas con la actualidad musical, rayadas mentales varias o cualquier tontería chistosa que me vaya encontrando por ahí...

Demonna Hell - 11-12-2005 22:29:30 | Categoria: Marilyn Manson
Y ahora va Manson y se me casa... Oo ¿y qué hago yo ahora?

Tras varios años saliendo con la ex-playmate Dita Von Teese, ambos, el rockero maldito Marilyn Manson y el nuevo icono del Burlesque Dita Von Teese, han decidido afianzar su relación contrayendo matrimonio de una forma totalmente distinta a la que el resto del mundo pudiera imaginarse: una ceremonia sencilla con familiares y amigos para profesarse lo único que les unia, su amor (ainsss ¡que potito!).

Añado unas breves notas informativas extraidas de la revista PEOPLE y traducidas (más o menos) al castellano (una hace lo que puede, ¿ehh?, no seas quisquillosos... )

"El rockero Marilyn Manson se casó con su novia desde hace varios años, la bailarina de Burlesque Dita Von Teese, el sábado delante de aproximadamente 60 invitados entre amigos, familiares y admiradores, la revista PEOPLE estuvo allí.

La ceremonia tuvo lugar en Kilsheelan, Condado Tipperary, Irlanda, en el Castillo Gurteen, casa de un amigo de la pareja, el artista gottfried helnwein. Contrariamente a los rumores de que ambos intercambiaría su sangre durante la ceremonia, en realidad se ofrecieron votos que escribieron el uno para el otro.

Manson (cuyo verdadero nombre es Brian Warner), de 36 años, dio a Von Teese (cuyo verdadero nombre es Heather Sweet), de 33 años, una alianza de boda de los Joyeros William Harold de Newport Beach, California, donde él también consiguió el anillo de compromiso, antigüedad de 7 quilates de diamante de corte redondo europeo. La alianza de boda del novio es un anillo hecho por encargo de platino con incrustaciones de ónice de Dana Schneider.

El rockero llevó un smoking de tafetán negro de seda con el terciopelo neto de John Galliano, mientras que Von Teese lució un vestido de tafetán en púrpura real de seda de Vivienne Westwood completo con el tren y enaguas llevadas sobre un corsé de costura de Sr. Pearl. Completando el conjunto llevó también un sombrero de tri-grano de Stephen Jones y zapatos de Christian Louboutin.

El director Alejandro Jodorowsky, amigo de muchos años del novio, casó a la pareja en la ceremonia no confesional. El cantante alemán Max Raabe y su banda proporcionaron la música. Los invitados incluyeron a Lisa Marie Presley y Eric Szmanda del C.S.I.

" Muchos esperaron que Manson y Dita tendrían algún tipo de boda vampírica loca, pero alguien que conozca a la pareja sabía que esta sería con estilo, elegante que era, ellos están totalmente enamorados" Refirió a PEOPLE un invitado de boda.

La celebración de boda comenzó el viernes por la noche con cena a las 9 en el Invernadero de la Casa Kilshane, la casa solariega de Regencia donde muchos de los invitados de boda se quedaron.

La relación entre Manson y Von Teese comenzó a salir a la luz a partir del 32 cumpleaños del rockero, el 5 de enero de 2001. Él le propuso en Los Angeles matrimonio el 22 de marzo de 2004. Este es el primer matrimonio para ambos."








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Last Updated:
Jan 17, 2006

Gender: Female
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Age: 21
Sign: Taurus

State: Kentucky
Country: US

Signup Date: 01/03/06

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Current mood: discontent

Everyone, Gottfried Helnwein.

You know there are just some things we will never understand. I suppose we can stand in one place and watch around us. We can protect eachother. But only to a certain point. What we cannot protect are matters of which we discuss through physical action. They take place through our skin. They do not easily exit; they do pull from all that is centered and penetrate through any open hole you may have. This is before all the holes are closed. I believe I've lost the light.

Here's some Virginia Woolf.

Each has his past shut in him like the leaves of a book known to him by his heart, and his friends can only read the title.

**I thought how unpleasant it is to be locked out; and I thought how it is worse, perhaps, to be locked in.

I want the concentration and the romance, and the worlds all glued together, fused, glowing: have no time to waste any more on prose.

4:29 PM - 2 Comments - 0 Kudos - Add Comment
f*ck me with your peg leg *270*

um so i absolutely love those images. where do you find such?

Posted by f*ck me with your peg leg *270* on Tuesday, January 17, 2006 at 4:57 PM
[Reply to this]
f*ck me with your peg leg *270*

by the way this is the most amazing artist ive seen in a long time...his photography..paintings..drawings...damn im jealous. hes amazing! im putting some if his art up on my page soon!

Posted by f*ck me with your peg leg *270* on Tuesday, January 17, 2006 at 7:07 PM
[Reply to this]

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January 18, 2006


Gottfried Helnwein é simplesmente o "Homem dos sete oficios"; o seu extenso trabalho percorre diversas áreas, tais como: a fotografia, a pintura, a cenografia, cinema e instalação(em todas elas ele é simplesmente genial). Nasce em Vienna, frequenta o curso de pintura na Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna.... actualmente vive na Irlanda. Os seus "afazeres" encontram-se bastante concentrados em provocar o público, através de uma linguagem soturna e fomentada. www.helnwein.com

posted by olfato at 6:18 AM







Gottfried Helnwein


Quelle: hompage G. Helnwein

Es gibt wohl kaum einen österreicher, der Gottfried Helnwein nicht kennt.

Quelle: homepage G. Helnwein
"Embarrassing" von Helnwein

Ich bin seinen Bildern erst Ende der 80er Jahren begegnet. ähnlich wie auf die Bilder von Krüger stiess ich auch auf die von Helnwein erstmals in der Stadtbibliothek.

Ich erinnere mich noch heute an die unmittelbare und tiefgreifende Wirkung seiner Bilder auf mich. Noch nie zuvor hatte ich erlebt, dass ein einfaches Bild so viele Emotionen auslösen kann. Es war wie Magie, wie Zauberei. Damals habe ich es nicht verstanden, konnte nicht denken, sondern nur gebannt schauen, unbeweglich wie das Kaninchen vor der Schlange.. Wie kommt diese Wirkung zustande? Was passiert hier nur? Wie macht er das?

homepage G. Helnwein
"The intrusion" von Helnwein

Die unglaubliche Schärfe und Klarheit, mir der einem Gottfried Helnwein das geschundene Empfinden, das vergewaltigte Kind vor Augen hält, hat mich lange irritiert.

Helnwein ist es gelungen, in einer Welt des Schweigens das Bild als Waffe zu benutzen und damit das Schweigen zu brechen. Er hält einer Welt, in der nur das Gute zugelassen ist, ihr Böses vor Augen – und macht diese Welt dadurch vollständig und ein Stück weit heiler. Da auch mir die Welt des Schweigens lange Zeit vertrauter war als ich mir selbst, verstehe ich seine Bilder. Was er geschafft hat, gehört für mich zum Besten, was jemand mit Kunst erreichen kann.

In dem faszinierenden Buch "Malerei muss sein wie Rockmusik“, Gottfried Helnwein im Gespräch mit Andreas Mäckler, habe ich auf S. 69 eine Geschichte gefunden, die mich sehr berührt hat. Hier ein Auszug:
. . .

Quelle: hompage G. Helnwein
Gottfried Helnwein

"... Auf diese Sache bin ich dann gestossen, als in der österreichischen Tageszeitung Kurier ein grosses Interview mit diesem Dr. Gross abgedruckt war, in dem man ihn gefragt hat: "Sie haben doch Kinder getötet in der Nazizeit?" Und er freimütig antwortete: "Ja, das stimmt, aber das waren halt andere Zeiten, damals war das üblich ... heutzutage würde ich das auch nicht mehr so machen..." Er war eigentlich ganz gelassen, und dann fragte der Interviewer: "Es ist also wahr, dass sie hunderte von Kindern mit Injektionen getötet haben?" - "Nein, das stimmt nicht, von Injektionen kann keine Rede sein. Wir haben es sehr human gemacht, finde ich, wir haben das Gift ins Essen gemischt, und die Kinder sind friedlich gestorben. Das heisst, die haben gar nicht mitgekriegt, was mit ihnen geschieht."

Quelle: hompage G. Helnwein
wertes Leben"

Das Schockierende für mich war weniger der Umstand, dass jemand so etwas sagt, sondern der Schock für mich war, dass darauf niemand reagiert hat. Es gab keinen einzigen Leserbrief! Niemand hat gefragt: Warum ist der denn eigentlich immer noch der Gerichtspsychiater Nr. 1 in österreich - da war einfach nichts, das hat niemanden gestört. Und dieselben Leute haben aber sehr heftig reagiert, als im ORF - im österreichischen Fernsehen - ein Moderator zum ersten Mal ohne Krawatte aufgetreten ist. Da brach für Tausende eine Welt zusammen. Es gab Berge von empörten Leserbriefen und Anrufen, die die sofortige Entlassung des TV-Mannes oder seine Vergasung forderten. Und diese Leute waren dieselben, die einfach entspannt die Zeitung umblätterten, als jemand sagte: "Ich habe ein paar hundert Kinder umgebracht."
Das verstand ich nicht, und ich dachte mir, vielleicht sind die Leute einfach nicht imstande zu lesen; vielleicht müssen sie sehen, wie das ausgesehen hat. Was der Mann so launig beschrieben hat - vielleicht musste ihnen erst jemand ein Bild davon malen. Und so rief ich im Profil an und bat um eine Seite für eine Art "offenen Brief". Die Redaktion war einverstanden, ich hatte aber nur eine Nacht Zeit, denn am nächsten Tag war Redaktionsschluss. Ich habe einfach ein Kind gemalt, das mit dem Gesicht in den Teller gefallen ist, nachdem es das vergiftete Essen gegessen hat, und alles ist vollgepatzt. Und dazu schrieb ich einen sarkastischen Brief. Das hat irgendwie doch Bewegung hineingebracht, die Leute redeten darüber, man war empört, denn das war nicht so lustig anzusehen. Gross ist kurze Zeit später, wenn ich das richtig verstanden habe, in Pension gegangen; aber auf eine unehrenhafte Art. Normalerweise wird man belobigt und kriegt irgendwas. Das hat er nicht - er musste zurücktreten. Als ihn Freunde gefragt haben, warum er mich nicht verklagt, hat er gemeint: "Als Nicht-Mediziner ist dieser Mann nicht satisfaktionsfähig für mich."

Ich kann seine ergiebige homepage www.helnwein.com nur wärmstens empfehlen.







um mundo imaginado
August 26, 2005

diario de bordo de uma viagem pelo matrix

Self-Portrait with Smiling-Aid,
Gottfried Helnwein - 1972.

devo escrever regularmente algumas linhas
para me lembrar a mim próprio
que me faz muito bem pensar que a auto-ajuda
como sinal deste tempo
me irrita cada vez mais.

paulo @ 04:08 novos mundos (2) sem mundos (0)

olha, olha o que descobri: abrindo no safari e não no firefoxo teu blog não só é diferente como abre esta caixinha que é diferente. ou mudaste tu e eu sou uma lerdinha? de qualquer forma, o comentário já lá está...
# posted by blimunda : 8:20 PM

abri um novo mundo "a pedido de várias famílias" ;)
# posted by paulo : 10:18 PM






AsKI-Newsletter 1/2005


Wilhelm-Busch-Museum Hannover /Deutsches Museum für Karikatur und kri- tische Grafik Gottfried elnwein-Ausstellung: Beautiful Children

Im Schaffen von Gottfried Helnwein durch- dringen ich – wie in keinem anderen Werk zeitgenössischer Kunst – die Themen und Bildsprachen von Hoch- und Trivialkunst. Der an der Wiener Kunstakademie ausgebildete
Maler bekennt, von der Rockmusik und Walt Disney mehr beeinflusst zu sein als von Mozart und Leonardo da Vinci. Es ist vor allem das christliche Thema der Leidensfähigkeit des Menschen, das Helnwein in schockierender Direktheit am Kind als dem eigentlichen Opfer unserer Zeit darstellt: „Das Kind verkörpert den unschul- digen, wehrlosen, der Gewalt ausgelieferten Menschen. Als unschuldiges ‚Lichtkind’, dessen Verletzungen an Kopf und Händen Licht- strahlen wie selbstleuchtende Stigmen aus- senden, wird das Kind zum Märtyrer, zur Dul- de- und Erlöserfigur.“ (Peter Gorsen). Als erwachsener Betrachter stehen wir diesen Bildern gleichsam als Täter gegenüber, die Bil der stellen uns immer wieder neu die Fragen nach unserer Mitverantwortung und unserer Mitschuld. Die suggestive Wirkung der Bilder Helnweins beruht vor allem auf ihrer irritierenden ästhetischen Form. Denn auf den ersten Blick lassen uns seine Bilder im Unklaren darüber,
ob es sich um Fotografien oder Malerei handelt: Was wie fotografierte Wirklichkeit aussieht, erweist sich beim genaueren Hinsehen als gemalt. Seine thematischen Bilder über die deutsche Geschichte und die Katastrophen unserer Zeit erscheinen uns deshalb ebenso wie seine Porträts bedeutender Persönlichkeiten von Arno Breker bis Andy Warhol, Michael Jackson und Marilyn Manson verwirrend vielStädelsches Kunstinstitut und Städtische Galerie, Frankfurt am Main / Tel. (0 69) 6 05 09
80 Internet:


bis 1.5.05: Der Zauber des Alltäglichen. Holländi-
sche Malerei von Adriaen Brouwer bis Johannes
Vermeer. In Zusammenarbeit mit dem Museum
Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam
bis 16.5.05: Wahlverwandtschaften. Neu in der
Graphischen Sammlung
17.6.-11.9.05: Ideen von Arkadien (Arbeitstitel)
Kleist-Museum, Frankfurt(Oder)
Tel.: (03 35) 53 11 55
Internet: www.kleist-museum.de
14.4.-15.6.05: Schiller in der bildenden Kunst des
19. und 20. Jahrhunderts (in Zusammenarbeit mit
Günther Troll, Ostfildern)
17.-19.6.05: Die Rezeption Kleists während des
Nationalsozialismus – Voraussetzungen, Lektüren,
Inszenierungen, Folgen (Kolloquium)
Franckesche Stiftungen zu Halle
Tel. (03 45) 2 12 74 00
Internet: www.francke-halle.de
bis 15.5.05: „Er werde im Guten wachsen“ –
Berühmte Schüler der Franckeschen Stiftungen
10.-13.5.05: Internationale wissenschaftliche Ta-
gung anlässlich des 300. Todestages von Johann
Ernst Glück (1654-1705)
29.5. – Oktober 2005: „Hoffnung besserer Zeiten“.
Pietismus in Geschichte und Gegenwart
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