2011 Together – Art & Design: Rouven Dürr

Titelbild zur Ausstellung von Rouven Duerr bei Nin Prantner 2011

2nd exhibition of the exhibition series “Together – Art & Design” a project of the Viennese furniture designer Nin Prantner in collaboration with the art historian and freelance curator Lucas Cuturi.

Rouven Dürr is a sculptor – deeply rooted in the tradition of classical sculpture, his main concern is the conquest of space. “This process …” says Dürr: ” … can certainly be regarded as an aggressive act.”
For him, the concept of sculpture expresses itself primarily through its self-containedness in space. Dürr, above all, investigates the behavior of human figures in space.
In contrast to the understanding of a classical stone sculptor, such as Michelangelo, whose great talent was to see the final appearance of his sculptures in the respective stone block he was working on, Dürr makes the attempt, as far as possible, to condense or reduce human forms to a single block. Virtuosity and elegance play a subordinate role for Dürr.
Like a solitaire, Dürr’s sculptures usually also stand there. According to the artist, the formal proximity to phallic representations is, however, rather unintentional. Although the forms are of human origin, they are modelled on the body as a whole. Sometimes he also draws on classical themes from ancient mythology, which have always served as a source of inspiration for classical sculpture.
For his part, the colouring plays only a subordinate role for the artist. However, according to Dürr, it sometimes also has a thoroughly humorous aspect when he pretends materiality by using gold or copper lacquer, knowing that a sculpture is actually made of papier-mâché.
The supposed aim of the artist, however, is to work exclusively with the inherent colour of the material.
Rouven Dürr is still searching in his efforts and, through his work, has not yet found a patent solution for himself. The artist is also not uncritical about the limited possibilities of sculpture and says: “… that one can take up space with sculpture – but something as complex as landscape can only be represented with extreme difficulty”.
Dürr’s understanding of basic space is, according to the artist, best reflected in his drawings and watercolours, which have their origins in the classical nude drawing.
The works that can be seen here in Nin Prantner’s exhibition study are basically ideas or sketches of sculptures that, during this process, exist only rudimentarily in the artist’s imagination.
The ink drawings in watercolour technique show the layering of layers and thus suggest a spatiality that in classical painting can actually only be achieved through the aid of the central perspective.
If the “watercolor drawings” are still the first steps of an approach to comprehend space, the pencil drawings are already very close to the final appearance of a possible three-dimensional object.

Text: Lucas Cuturi

Duration of exhibition: 18 June 2011 to 10 July 2011

Links: www.rouvenduerr.at, www.nin.at