Vienna 1., The Fantasm-Museum

When I, during my strolls in the city, passed at Josefsplatz, I noticed, that a so-called fantasm-museum had been established in the year 2011. It is situated in the Palais Palffy, a building that was erected already in the 16th century. It has a - in our days rather outworn - facade in Renaissance style and apart from showing the fantasts, there are concerts given in the house, mainly Mozart and Strauss. Mozart himself has played the piano here and furthermore his "The Marriage of Figaro" had its first public performance here.
If I am honest, I have to admit, that I passed the building, because it looked so uninviting. But the name, "Fantasm-Museum", animated my curiosity and when I by chance came along once more, a couple of days later, I had a closer look, in order to learn, what the "fantasts" really were all about. Well, it is an exhibition of art by the artists of the "Vienna School of Fantastic Realism".

Among them are names like Arik Brauer, Wolfgang Hutter or Ernst Fuchs, whose mansion I have written about already and about whose art I have put a page into the gallery of the Werbeka Netshop.
The very short leaflet, that you get for free at the entry, states, that you will find "fantastic art" here. In my opinion this denotation is very wrong, because it leads the mind to all those abstract pieces of art, by which the world is owerflown in these days.

Whereas the "Fantastic Realism" declares, that you will not find any splotched blobs or unshaped chunks in steel or concrete in this exhibition, but that the reproduced images indeed are fantastic, but nevertheless realistic.

St. Steven's Cathedral - Kurt Regschek

Selfie - Ernst Fuchs

And that is something entirely different. Last not least I am a fervent fan of Salvador Dalí. Surrealism is apparently the father of the Fantastic Realism. - So, let's get inside. It is not without grumbling though, that I pay the nine Euro, which are asked for the entry. There is no relation to the extensiveness of the exhibition, which occupies the size of four normal rooms - but well ...

No Title - Andreas N Franz

Borderline - Katrin Alvarez

Inside there is a poster with a flaming clarification, which I indeed support strongly. It says for instance:
"What today is called valid modernity, is a thin crust of curators' cooled down art, which is floating on the red-hot core of the Fantasm, the Surrealism and the Visionary." And there is also a letter to be seen - from Hundertwasser to a publishing house, demanding to edit a book about the Viennese School of Fantastic Realism. Here he writes: "Such a book is necessary because of the fact, that the negativistic "art", led and promoted by a pseudointellectual mafia, throws itself onto the dungheap. The people again long for paintings, which are made with a smooth brush."
So very true!

Amanda from Boras visiting Venus from Urbino - Krassimir Kolev

Persephone - Rainer Stern

Furthermore there is one room dedicated to the artists only. There are fabrics hanging down from the ceiling, with short information on and a picture of every artist, as well as statements from other people about their art.
Of course other people have also depicted Daphne in the moment, when she is transformed into a laurel - of course it is an advantage, if you have seen St. Stevens Cathedral in real life - and of course it helps, if you know, that the Venus of Urbino (painted by Titian) lies in exactly the same position as the Venus by Kolev is posing in. Nonetheless I believe, that everyone can enjoy this exhibition, as the most important thing is, what people themselves "see" in a picture. My personal favorite is the painting to the right, because it is so optimistic and "full of life". It is naturally impossible, that the sap of the trunk can rise through the metal of the axe, and neither through the dead wood of the shaft - but it happens anyhow!

I did not regret the nine Euro, when I left again.

© Bernhard Kauntz, Västerås, 2015

Outgrowth - Wolfgang Rose

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23.2.2015 by