A catalogue / artist's book as puzzling and conceptually elaborate as the exhibition it accompanies.
This fully circular publication has no beginning or end, allowing for multiple points of entry and unconventional ways of reading—both from left to right and vice versa, as well as upside down and right-side up—seeking to interrupt learned behaviors and soliciting the reader's active engagement. It complements the exhibition as it unfolds a play of doubling and symmetry that references the exhibits both formally and in terms of content. This intertwining is also evident in the central text around which the catalogue pivots: a conversation between Carsten Höller—who gained academic experience in phytopathology before embarking on his artistic career—and the taxidermist Alfred Höller during the festival “#WWTBD – What Would Thomas Bernhard Do” at Kunsthalle Wien in 2013. Speaking about taxidermy (birds in particular) and the history of the origins of Thomas Bernhard's infamous novel Correction, which Bernard wrote in Alfred Höller's attic in 1974, the conversation examines conflicting areas between life and death, and between art and nature.
Published on the occasion of the eponymous exhibition at TBA21, Wien, July 10–January 4, 2015.
Carsten Höller (born 1961 in Brussels, lives and works in Stockholm) applies his training as a scientist in his work as an artist, concentrating particularly on the nature of human relationships. His major installations include Test Site (2006), Tate Modern's Turbine Hall; Amusement Park (2006) at MASS MoCA, North Adams, USA; The Double Club (2008–09) in London, which took the form of a bar, restaurant and nightclub designed to create a dialogue between Congolese and Western culture. His works have been shown internationally, including solo exhibitions at Fondazione Prada, Milan (2000); the ICA Boston (2003); Musée d'Art Contemporain, Marseille (2004); Kunsthaus Bregenz, Austria (2008); Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam (2010); Hamburger Bahnhof, Museum für Gegenwart, Berlin (2011), New Museum, New York (2011), TBA 21, Vienna (2014) and National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia (2014-15).