Like many artists, Manfred Wakolbinger is a seeker. He breathes life, as it were, into his preferred material metal. In his metamorphoses, he juxtaposes metal with other materials, exposes it, exhibits it, and at the same time always remains an affectionate observer of his own work process.
Wakolbinger loves representing physical processes with this materials, thus consciously addressing all the viewer’s senses. For example in the series “Zungen” (Tongues) from 2018-2019, in which he forms soft, warm copper into tongues, then exposes them on a cold concrete pedestal. Or in his series “Circulations” from 2017-2018, where stainless steel pipes are mounted on the walls like exposed streams of the body’s interior.
The black-and-white photographic works from the series “Reversal” from 2018-2019 are representations of deep sea creatures and are thus linked to “Circulations” directly and as an entity. The images were taken by the artist under difficult conditions and make the physicality of both the animals as well as the photographer tangible to the viewer. Through technical interventions in the process of photography, works from an in-between realm are created; a pictorial world between nature photography and invention.
Born in 1952 in Upper Austria, Manfred Wakolbinger completed training in metalworking and toolmaking. Together with his wife Anna Heindl, he initially focused on jewellery design but he also attended seminars by Bazon Brock at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna. Since the 1980s, the artist has been part of international exhibitions, e.g. the Documenta 8 or the Biennale in Venice, to name a few.