Elmar Trenkwalder

sculptures, drawings

18 October – 15 November 2009

Because of their exuberant ornamentation and abundance of detail the ceramic sculptures of Elmar Trenkwalder (Innsbruck, Austria 1959) make an overwhelming impression. Closer examination of the sculptures shows that all kinds of erotic details have been incorporated. In Hindu temple architecture eroticism is usually expressed explicitly, the coupling gods and demigods are framed by the architecture. In the sculptures of Trenkwalder there is rather a fusion of architecture and eroticism: columns are phallic, ornaments have voluptuous forms. Thus the anecdotal is transcended and eroticism acquires a spiritual overtone, presented in a mysterious, almost sacral architecture.

The form language of Trenkwalder’s sculptures is related to the exuberant baroque architecture once so flourishing in Austria. Sometimes the sculptures also remind you of the Kachelofen, which are often lavishly ornamented and painted. At the exhibition several small sculptures and one large totem-like sculpture are to be seen, which latter has a splendid rhythm caused by the alternation of white glaze and black engobe. Furthermore, design drawings of the sculptures are shown, besides independent drawings of architectonic fantasies.

At the Stedelijk Museum Schiedam three big sculptures of Elmar Trenkwalder are shown in the exhibition Delusional Virtuosity. through October 18th. www.stedelijkmuseumschiedam.nl.