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Jean Tinguely, Le Cyclope – La Tête, 1970. Museum Tinguely, Basel / Donation Niki de Saint Phalle. Photo: Christian Baur, Basel © VBK Vienna, 2008

VIENNA.- With "Jean Tinguely – A Retrospective“ the KunstHausWien honours one of the most important and popular representatives of the development of modern art, which aimed at extending the traditional concept of art: replacing the classical "static" forms of painting and sculpture by experiments with moveable objects and materials hitherto alien to art.

"Beauty" evolves, with Tinguely, from a combination of the "ugly", as his works are not given high polish; they work despite their anachronistically un-functional appearance and the shabbiness of their components and thus become a double parody of a high-tech environment: They are not only "pure products of art" without a function, but at the same time caricature a traditional concept of beauty which indispensably demands a highly polished, smooth exterior.

In 1991, the year the KunstHausWien museum was opened, it was Hundertwasser’s desire to begin the series of international special exhibitions with a Jean Tinguely exhibition. Jean Tinguely passed away in Berne on 30 August, 1991. "Nachtschattengewächse" (Solanaceae) in the KunstHausWien was his last exhibition in his lifetime.

On occasion of the first exhibition of Jean Tinguely in the KunstHausWien, a video was produced in which Jean Tinguely talks about his life, his art and his philosophy. This unique and impressive documentation dating from 1991 was included in the catalogue of the current retrospective as DVD and will be available in the KunstHausWien MuseumShop.

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Jean Tinguely, Miostar No. 2, 1974 Museum Tinguely, Basel / Donation Niki de Saint Phalle. Photo: Christian Baur, Basel © VBK Vienna, 2008