Florian Pumhösl processes the tropes of art, architecture and graphics of the modernist avant-garde to create new aesthetic systems through painting, film and installation. He addresses the legacy of modernism through its canon of abstract visual language, from utopian architectural plans and buildings to innovations in publishing, the politics implicit in exhibitions and the motifs of early experimental filmmaking. In a series of minimal glass paintings, previously shown at the Lisson Gallery geometrical shapes float in space, while their titles – including Plakat (Poster), Seite (Page) and Aushang (Notice) – identify the shapes as reductions of typographical elements from the 1920s. Where their original function was to aid interpretation of a text, here they are devoid of text and interpretation proliferates. In OA 1979-3-5-036 (2007), Pumhösl converted a 17th-century Japanese Kimono pattern catalogue into a 16mm animated film, selecting, simplifying and rearranging the patterns in order to ultimately arrive at a typology of fragments. Again, the title grounds the work in research: it is the British Library catalogue number for the original source. Moving between countries and media, Pumhösl picks up the skins shed between prototypes and artefacts, in readings that undermine the possibility of closed cultures.
Florian Pumhösl was born in Vienna in 1971, where he lives and works. He Studied at the Higher Federal Teaching and Research Institute for Graphic Vienna (1989-91) and the University of Applied Arts Vienna, Austria (1989-97). Solo exhibitions include Haubrok Foundation, Berlin, Germany (2015), Kunsthaus Bregenz, Austria, (2012), The Art Institute of Chicago, USA (2012), MUMOK, Vienna, Austria (2011), Kunstverein for Rhineland and Westphalia, Dusseldorf, Germany (2010), Musée d'Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean, Luxembourg (2009), New Kunsthalle St. Gallen, Switzerland (2005-6), Secession, Vienna, Austria (2000). He participated in Documenta 12, Kassel, Germany (2007) and São Paulo Biennial, Brazil (2006).