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Sepp Laubner: Mirroring / Spiegelung

Exhibition title: Sepp Laubner: Mirroring / Spiegelung
Venue: Jan Koniarek Gallery, Koppel Vila, Zelený kríček 3, Trnava
Curator: Róbert Němeček
Opening: March 30, 2017 (Thu) at 06:00 pm
Duration: March 30, 2017 (Thu) – May 4, 2017 (Thu)


Sepp Laubner is a formally trained painter and a noted exponent of contemporary trends in abstract painting, who presently belongs to the most renowned figures of the middle generation of artists in Austrian Burgenland. Laubner was born on October 25, 1949 in Eisenstadt, where he concluded his secondary education in 1968, and subsequently went on to study art at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna until 1974. Even back in his studies, he already gravitated towards the abstract style of a group of fine artists represented by Peter Pongratz, Franz Ringel, and Marta Jungwrith. In 1976 he actively participated in the founding and subsequently running of an Artists’ Centre (Action Centre) in “Cselley Műhle” in the village of Oslip near Eisenstadt, where he also has his studio. This spacious former mansion has been modernized and it presently serves as an excellent platform for art.

Abstract painting, compared to its realistic counterpart, allows the viewer to attribute to the work of art his own meaning or his own plot. The author counts on the active participation of the viewer, who based on the signals emitted from the painting creates his own stories. The author purposefully does not name his paintings, so that each viewer can name the work of art as he finds suitable. This is the way how the artist communicates with the viewer. This principle also inspired the title of the exhibition: Mirroring/Spiegelung – i.e. a sort of reflection of a painting mirrored in the eyes of the viewers.

Although Laubner’s paintings give the impression of a “cunningly organized chaos” or of an “ordered disorder”, they depict entirely real, though abstract themes. His compositions are full of tension and of passion for life, but also of life for passion, in which imagination draws the viewer into an internal plot. Bold colours, especially omnipresent intensive red in contrast with bright and dark tinges, drawn insertions, and splatters of brush, make a suggestive and a surprising impression. What is revealed in these expressive tensions are compositional units and secrets of passions along with hidden eroticism.

Sepp Laubner mostly uses the acrylic technique and layering of varnish. He is very sensitive, intellectually polite, emotionally strong as well as perceptive in his production. His art is consistent, its development is linear and continuous, we can, nonetheless, discern several phases in his production. His art involves concentrated sensuality and an expressive and dynamical manner of painting with the use of random interventions. His works are monumental not only in terms of their content, but also oftentimes in terms of their scale.

He is therefore often invited to collaborate with architects on interior decoration of public spaces around Eisenstadt and Vienna. This is the reason why the Burgenland county rightly refers to him as to “its own” painter. Apart of domestic exhibitions in Eisenstadt, Laubner has also exhibited in Vienna, Linz, Graz, and Salzburg. His works are also known beyond the borders of Austria, in Győr (H), Bayreut, Frankfurt, Dombirn (D), Paris (F), Venice, Milan (I), as well as in Korea (Soul) and USA (New York).

The exhibition of Sepp Laubner MIRRORING/SPIEGELUNG in the building of Jan Koniarek Gallery is not coincidental. It is the result, or rather the outcome of a long cross-border exchange of information in the domain of culture within the framework of the RECOM scheme between the Trnava Self-Governing Region and the Federal State of Burgenland. But it is also a natural outcome of my personal friendship with a unique man, whom I met for the first time at a symposium in Cselley Műhle.

The result of this symposium was a very successful travelling exhibition “Múry rozdeľujú -mosty spájajú” (“Walls Divide - Bridges Unite”) installed, apart of Cselley Műhle, in Budapest, Trnava, Beyreut and Leipzig in 2015. Sepp Laubner participated in this joint exhibition in the Trnava Synagogue – Centre of Contemporary Art. He introduces us to his cross-sectional collection which also includes his latest works that he created especially for our gallery where they have their debut.

Róbert Nemček,
Exhibition Curator


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Press Release
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