KOENIG2 by_robbygreif @ ZONA MACO

KOENIG2 by_robbygreif @ ZONA MACO | Ovidiu ANTON | booth EJ34 

Ovidiu Anton develops his artistic method of critique as a focussing initially on trivia. He investigates the fence along sections of the border between the USA and Mexico. He discovers that this unyielding structure, described by ex–President Donald Trump as a bulwark (»Build that Wall!«), is in no way impregnable. For example, it can be perforated with a metal cutter and crawled through. Afterwards, a unit of the US Border Patrol patches the fence up again in the morning with welding devices and pieces of metal. Anton works out how the banal fulfillment of a daily task – the repair of the border fence – reflects the matter of course with which the defence against »aliens« is carried out. His wooden sculptures correspond to the incidental geometry of the patching of the fence. 

An additional strand of Anton’s research leads unexpectedly to Italy in the Second World War. Contemporary history as a patchwork. For their aeroplanes, the US Army used a mobile infrastructure: transportable landing strips, so–called »Landing Mats« made of steel plates that could be snapped together. After the war, some of this material was brought back to the USA and was later employed for sections of the border wall to Mexico. Other plates can be still be seen today in the southern Italian region around Foggia: the inhabitants transformed them into, amongst other things, window shutters or doors. Today they appear, deceptively, as part of the traditional local architecture. The everyday is not harmless, and the past is not dead. some of this material was brought back to the USA and was later employed for sections of the border wall to Mexico. Other plates can be still be seen today in the southern Italian region around Foggia: the inhabitants transformed them into, amongst other things, window shutters or doors. Today they appear, deceptively, as part of the traditional local architecture. The everyday is not harmless, and the past is not dead. 

Stella Rollig, 2021, General Director Belvedere, Vienna
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ARTNews.com: The 10 Best Booths at Zona Maco 2023: #1 Ovidiu Anton at Christine König Galerie (February 9, 2023)

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