The exhibition shows a cross-section of the life’s work of the Austrian painter and graphic artist Robert Hammerstiel (1933 – 2020), who would have celebrated his 90th birthday on February 18 this year.

Hammerstiel’s work is subject to constant change – bright youthful pictures are replaced by dark, melancholic works by the end of the 1980s, and after a visit to New York they are transformed into strongly coloured compositions in which the artist processes the lights and colors of the metropolis. The large-scale, colour-intensive paintings of American artists also had a lasting influence on Hammerstiel.

Born in Werschetz (today Serbia) in 1933, Hammerstiel experienced his family’s expulsion from their homeland at the age of 11 and the horror of internment in three different camps. In 1947 he managed to flee to Austria, and from 1958 onwards – while pursuing his profession as a foundryman – he studied with Gerda Matejka-Feldern, Robert Schmidt, Gerhard and August Swoboda.

Robert Hammerstiel I A multilayered encounter

February 26 – April 23, 2023

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