Trenkwalder, Elmar

1959 · Austria

Artist biography

Trenkwalder, Elmar is an established contemporary artist, who was born in Austria, like other renowned artists such as Siegfried Anzinger, Martin Beck, Johannes Deutsch, Gerold Tagwerker, and Robert Muntean. Trenkwalder, Elmar was born in 1959.

Trenkwalder, Elmar's Gallery representation

Trenkwalder, Elmar is represented and exhibited by Galerie Bernard Jordan in Paris, France.

Historical Context of Austria

At the start of the twentieth century, Austria was among the most innovative and culturally progressive countries. It fostered important developments in the Arts and Crafts Movement and Art Nouveau, called Jugendstil in German, from around 1895 to 1910, forming a key bridge between the nineteenth century and the onset of modernism. This kind of progressive, avant-garde thinking led directly into the Viennese Secession movement, one of the key art and design movements of the early twentieth century. It was formed in 1897 by a group of Austrian painters, graphic artists, sculptors and architects, including Josef Hoffman Koloman Moser, Otto Wagner, and Gustave Klimt, when artists resigned, en masse, from the Association of Austrian Artists in protest against its support for more traditional artistic styles. and an exchange of ideas with artists outside Austria, disputing artistic nationalism, renewing the decorative arts and, most crucially, creating a "total art (Gesamtkunstwerk)" that unified painting, architecture, and the decorative arts. The group was fervently opposed to the dominance of the official Vienna Academy of the Arts (the Vienna Künstlerhaus), and official art salons, with their traditional orientation toward Historicism. Ultimately the group broke apart, the decorative artists choosing instead to focus on a new guild called the Wiener Werkstatte. In the late 1930s, Austria was annexed by the growing force of Hitler's Nazi Germany, an act known as the Anschluss, and which organised Austria into a province of a greater German Reich. During this period, like in Germany, the Avant-garde was named 'Entartete Kunst', translating to 'degenerate art', and was oppressed with only 'official' social realist art being approved, or even allowed by the state. Consequently, there was a significant exodus of creative talent who determined that their interests would be best served by moving to London or New York. In the twentieth century, key Austrian artists included Josef Hoffman, Gustav Klimt, Egon Schiele, Herbert Bayer (the typography and graphic design pioneer of the Bauhaus), architect and designer Josef Frank, Oskar Kokoschka, Alfred Kubin, Friedensreich Hundertwasser, Maria Lassnig, Hermann Nitsch, Arnulf Rainer, Franz West and Erwin Wurm.

Further Biographical Context for Trenkwalder, Elmar

Born in 1959, Trenkwalder, Elmar was largely inspired by the 1970s. The 1970s were a period of consolidation and development in the arts, most often characterised as a response to the central stresses of the previous decade. Conceptual art developed as a key movement, and was in part an evolution of and response to minimalism. Land Art took the works of art into the expansive outdoors, taking creative production away from commodities and looking to engage with the earliest ideas of environmentalism. Process art combined elements of conceptualism with other formal reflections, creating mysterious and experimental bodies of work. Expressive figurative painting began to regain prominence for the first time since the decline of Abstract Expressionism twenty years before, especially in Germany where Gerhard Richter, Anselm Kiefer, Georg Baselitz became highly renowned figures worldwide. Many of the artists who became so famous and successful in the 1960s remained dominant figures. For example, Andy Warhol branched out into film and magazine publishing, the first kind of cross cultural activity for a visual artist. This secured his reputation as a globally renowned celebrity in his own right. International movements gained prominence included feminism, which translated strongly into the visual culture, and photorealism which had begun in the 1960s and enjoyed substantial commercial and critical success. For the first time painters and sculptors from Latin America were embraced by the dominant critical and institutional levers in New York.

Trenkwalder, Elmar

Accrochage 1
Group Exhibition
Galerie Bernard Jordan · Paris, France
May 11 – May 24, 2020