Paul Leitner’s work often takes the form of common arrangements or apparatuses that normally function under simple mechanisms and physical laws, yet when he adapts or modifies the pieces slightly they come to deploy unexpected, symbolic, poetic or critical effects. Tools or instruments, clocks, thermometers, nuts or railway tracks become the markers of historical shifts, economic and socio-political processes – meaning improvements, but also standardisation, control and normalisation. A norm, from the Latin norma, meaning ‘square’ or ‘rule’, designates a widespread condition and is considered a rule to be followed. Leitner works both with and against norms – be they metric, temporal, material, technical or aesthetic norms – with an obvious economy of means. The materials used are often ‘insignificant’: found, swapped or bought at a low price. Forms mainly result from functions. Processes are mainly left to their entropy – or the entropy of an already existing system is fostered.

The traveler (2012), for example, is a series of kinetic sculptures in which a wind tunnel – a DIY adaption of construction sector and industrial techniques – maintains a seed suspended in the air – thereby suspending the cycle of reproduction. Characterising pioneer vegetal species, able to colonise new continents, the dissemination by the wind is substituted in the work by a perpetuum mobile. The seed is transformed into a laboratory subject, sterile. The whole dispositive draws the attention on an ephemeral and almost invisible phenomenon and makes it mysterious and poetic, this way poetising as well the idea of a permanent nomadism.

Text: Anne Faucheret

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*1983 in Vienna

Exhibitions (Selection):

Antisolubility of Difference, unttld contemporary, Wien (solo)(A)

Galerie Km0, Innsbruck (A)

Lightness is matter. Matter is lightness, Kunstraum Niederösterreich, Vienna (A)
ich weiß nicht, Wie die Beziehungen zwischen den Dingen wachsen, Vienna Biennale, MAK Vienna (A)

All kinds of objects, unttld contemporary, Vienna (solo) (A)

Destination Wien, Kunsthalle Wien, Vienna (A)
Rejection, unttld contemporary, Vienna (A)

Leitner | Leitner “paper-jack”, “four at six” Künstlerdorf Neumarkt an der Raab, Neumarkt an der Raab (A)

naked fire “the traveler”, Neue Galerie, Innsbruck (A)
generation 21 “the traveler”, Landesgalerie Burgenland, Eisenstadt (A)
Lafin c’estmerde “the traveler”, Lafin C’estmerde, Vienna (A)

blossoms of a multitude “paper jack”, Künstlerhaus Palais Thurn und Taxis, Bregenz (A)
next generation “DO = 05 54E2″, Künstlerdorf Neumarkt an der Raab, Neumarkt an der Raab (A)
Franzi’s choice “1und1″, Museum of Too Modern Art, Litija, Slovenia

other dimensions “paper jack”,  Schikaneder,  Vienna (A)

2009                                                                                                                                                                                       Alias in Wonderland “l-p-r-n-t-s-c-r-n”, MQ quartier 21, Freiraum, Vienna (A)