Untitled, 2006

© Bildrecht, Vienna, 2006
Photo: Archiv HZ | Courtesy Galerie Meyer Kainer, Vienna

Wood, particleboard, MDF, pressboard, plywood, chipboard, OSB, black marker, pencil
278 x 80 x 54 cm

Heimo Zobernig's furniture/objects are located in the experimental field of tension between the situation of the exhibition and the functional object. That is, during an exhibition, the shelf is perceived as a classical sculpture and afterwards it becomes a shelf again – if one has the courage to use it as such – in the daily routine of the institution.

In other words, only its use in the ”art space” defines it as an artwork. In an interview for the TBA21-Collection Book, Zobernig says: "I want that the shelf in the exhibition is understood as an autonomous sculpture – but that’s only possible as long as it is not being used conventionally.

One could also discuss why it is not as practical or useful as a regular shelf or one could try to understand this problem by the actual use of it. As an artist, I constantly find myself in this dilemma of trying to decide upon proportions. These proportions are run through in various possibilities without ever exhausting the options. There are thousands of possibilities of fitting the parts together: that’s the challenge. If it works out, it becomes a sculpture. However, it’s a never-ending problem."

*1958 in Mauthen, Austria | Living and working in Vienna, Austria