Artist News

Norbert Kricke @ Triennale Fellbach



The Triennial was born in Fellbach in 1980 as a forum of contemporary small-scale sculpture.

40,000 - A Museum of Curiosity.
Curator: Dr Brigitte Franzen

The 14th Triennial will be opened on Saturday, 1 June 2019, in the Alte Kelter in Fellbach, and will run until 29 September 2019.

The 14th Small Sculpture Triennial will be curated by Dr Brigitte Franzen (*1966). An expert in art and cultural studies, Brigitte Franzen is currently chair of the Peter and Irene Ludwig Foundation. Between 2009 and 2015 she was director of the Ludwig Forum for International Art in Aachen. From 2005 to 2008 she worked as a curator for contemporary art at the Westphalian State Museum and curated the Sculpture Projects Münster in 2007. She has authored and edited numerous publications on contemporary art and has taught extensively, including at the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich and the University of Cologne. She describes her approach as “research−based curating”.

For the Triennial Franzen has drawn inspiration from the spectacular findings of the prehistoric figurines in the caves of the nearby Swabian Jura, which, dating back some 40,000 years, include the lion-man and the Venus of Hohle Fels, pieces that have generated enormous international interest. From this local background she argues the case for taking a perspective on contemporary art that is at once many−voiced, model-based and anthropological. Historical objects, in part as high−quality replicas, will thus be integrated into the exhibition.

40,000. A Museum of Curiosity is the title of the 14th Small Sculpture Triennial. The small sculptural format is particularly suitable for demonstrating key aspects of the drive behind artistic expression such as mimesis, world interpretation, experimentation and innovation. Smallness is a unique dimension. In terms of sculpture, the small implies transportability, the handmade, or at the very least an appropriately scaled dimension and model quality.

Religious objects, talismans, totems, fetishes, toys, horcruxes or attributes − throughout history small sculptures have had a physical closeness to humans or been in the immediately surrounds. Inherent to the small sculpture, these possibilities are still relevant for art production today. This gives rise to an unusual intimacy, or indeed an affinity, between the object and owner or viewer, which in turn impacts on the meaning assigned to the piece. The archetypical or prototypical resides in this scalability. It demands greater attention to the details and closer inspection.

More than 50 international artists are taking part in the 14th Triennial and their works will illustrate the explorative impulse in sculptural practice, one that is oriented on gaining knowledge and insight. Artists are experts for an anthropological inquisitiveness, for creating a work through the interplay of memory and hand. This aspect will be examined in detail and is especially relevant today given current developments in the areas of automatization and digitalization.

To tell a heterogeneous, mutually−inspiring history between art objects and cult and everyday objects is the basis of the exhibition concept. Despite the uniformity of our current globalised world, there exist cultural and aesthetic differences across a broad spectrum of cultures. Taking a look back at the art production of earlier times shows how curiosity and the sheer necessity to interpret the surrounding world or − since the rise of modernity − to respond to it with (counter−) models, has been an anthropological constant of artistic work. Art then arises when nature is being investigated, weighed up, both the surrounding nature of our environment and the nature of the human body, be it in the form of transgressing the boundaries set by nature or the attempt to find reconciliation with nature. This is reflected in the exhibition design by the renowned landscape architects from the atelier le balto, which employs garden−like structures.

As a Museum of Curiosity, the imposing venue of the Alter Kelter in Fellbach will enable visitors to take part in a special art experience and, at the same time, embed the Triennial in the broader context of the Remstal Garden Show, to be held concurrently in 16 municipalities along the Rems River.

A diverse supporting programme, including around 250 guided tours for adults, children and school groups, as well as workshops, lectures, readings, panel discussions, concerts and participative events, will further enhance the exhibition experience.