Xenia Hausner

Stranger Things

April 17th –
June 9th, 2024
Venezia
  • Xenia Hausner
    Stranger Things,2022
    Oil and acrylic on Dibond
    160 x 250 cm
  • Xenia Hausner
    Spill,2024
    Polyurethane, aluminium, paper, plaster and paint
    92 x 83 x 45 cm
  • Xenia Hausner
    Women Only,2023
    Oil and acrylic on Dibond
    125 x 100 cm
  • Xenia Hausner
    Jardin des Plantes,2024
    Oil on paper on Dibond
    106 x 139 cm
  • Xenia Hausner
    Floating,2018
    Oil on paper on Dibond
    95 x 130 cm
  • Xenia Hausner
    Zone A,2024
    Oil on paper on Dibond
    157 x 216 cm
  • Xenia Hausner
    Double Dip,2024
    Oil and acrylic on Dibond
    200 x 170 cm
  • Xenia Hausner
    Those who walk away,2024
    Polyurethane, aluminium, plaster and paint
    126 x 220 x 62 cm
  • Xenia Hausner
    Atemluft,2024
    Polished aluminium and bronze cast with patina
    60 x 51 x 62 cm
  • Xenia Hausner
    Pieta,2024
    Oil on paper on Dibond
    155 x 121 cm
  • Xenia Hausner
    Deep Water,2024
    Oil and acrylic on Dibond
    230 x 160 cm

Patricia Low Venezia is delighted to present Stranger Things, the first solo presentation by renowned Austrian artist Xenia Hausner with the gallery. In subtle connection with the overarching theme of this year’s Venice Biennale, Foreigners Everywhere, the exhibition gathers a series of recent paintings and several sculptures, including a wall sculpture – a new development within the artist’s oeuvre. All the works in the show further explore ideas that are consistent with her entire oeuvre: The Female.

Hausner‘s brightly colorful paintings picture individuals in moments of connection and transit. Stranger Things (2022), the painting that lends its title to the exhibition, shows three female characters in what seems to be a night club. However, many details in this picture tend to contradict our initial assumptions and, in a classic Hausner’s manner, leave once more the narrative ambivalent and open to interpretations. What exactly is that place with a curious painted floor? What brings these three characters together in this picture? Are the gestures between the two younger women an expression of their sexual attraction? In fact, the female characters Hausner portrays embody all genders and play various roles – like actors they explore a variety of relationships.

Staging is critical in Hausner‘s work, her paintings hint at narratives beyond the frame, while foreclosing the possibility of a complete reading. Bodies are entangled, their relations imbued with a sense of intimacy and urgency in fragments of a story, comparable to film stills whose plot has gone missing, they defy clear interpretation. Narratives of exile and displacement are intimated in different forms – the unusual shaped-canvas used for Double Dip creates a salient focus on the current social disruption and points out this fragmentation – in the literal sense of the word – through the central figure which is headless. Hands reach for other hands, whether seeking help or experiencing rejection. Despite its luminously shimmering colors, the duality of the scene in Deep Water (2024) cannot divert from the drama it depicts through a boat used by migrants who might still be hidden under the beautiful blanket that covers part of its deck. The artist seems to be playing with the old saying “still waters run deep”. 

Three new sculptures echo the themes and figures in the paintings. In Spill (2024), a professionally attired female figure is slicked with what appears to be crude oil. A bird drenched in the same viscous black liquid perches upon her head, as she holds on to a red and white life-ring. Atemluft (2024), which means “A Breath of Air,” addresses air pollution. In Xenia Hausner’s own words: “Atemluft is a concrete image of desperation, a struggle for what we need the most in order to live. What are we losing? What have we put at risk?”. As in the paintings, these are scenes of outreach, of attempts at salvage in a turbulent world. In their ambiguous echoing of present realities, the works extend a quiet, connecting thread to the lyrical title of this year’s Venice Biennale, Foreigners Everywhere.

Xenia Hausner (b. 1951 in Vienna, Austria) studied stage design at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London and worked as a set designer for much of her early career. Pivoting to painting in the early 1990s, Hausner has exhibited her work globally ever since, including at The Albertina Museum Vienna; Batliner Art Foundation, Vienna; Museum Franz Gertsch, Burgdorf; Elbphilharmonie, Hamburg; Glasstress, Palazzo Franchetti Venice, collateral to the 57th Venice Biennale 2017; 8th Moscow Biennale; Shanghai Art Museum; Today Art Museum, Beijing; Hong Kong Arts Centre; Russian State Museum, St. Petersburg; Museum Würth France Erstein; Würth Collection Oslo; State Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow; Bienalsur – South America’s Art Biennale 2019 – Juntos Aparte, Colombia; This will have been another happy day!, PalaisPopulaire der Sammlung Deutsche Bank Berlin, 2020.

true

Xenia Hausner (b. 1951 in Vienna, Austria) studied stage design at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London and worked as a set designer for much of her early career. Pivoting to painting in the early 1990s, Hausner has exhibited her work globally ever since, including the Museum Franz Gertsch in Burgdorf, Switzerland, the Albertina Museum in Vienna, the Pushkin State Museum in Moscow, the Bayerisches Nationalmuseum in Munich, the Essl Museum in Klosterneuburg, Austria and the Shanghai Art Museum, among countless others. Hausner is a founding member of Vienna-based non-profit Women Without Borders.

Subscribe to Our Newsletter


© PLC Gstaad GmbH. All rights reserved.