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25.10.2023 - 14.01.2024
Mario Kiesenhofer (born 1984 in Freistadt, lives and works in Vienna) will be showing his first institutional solo exhibition at the tresor of the Bank Austria Kunstforum Wien in autumn/winter 2023/24. For several years, Mario Kiesenhofer's artistic work has focused on queer spaces and their visibility. The artist uses photography and video as media. Social places, landscapes, architectures and virtual environments created by and claimed by the gay and queer community are scanned by the artist with his camera and create a topography of desire.
For the exhibition at tresor, Mario Kiesenhofer is working on a new photographic portrait series for which the artist focuses on the queer rave scene in Eastern Europe, with emphasis on Warsaw. DJs, dancefloors, avant-garde drag performances, club-scenes and raves are the expressive platforms of an active resistance movement that celebrates the concerns of the LGBTQIA+ community, which are also justified in Eastern Europe and important for all of us: tolerance and acceptance of diversity are nothing less than cornerstones of liberal democracy in an enlightened society. Bathed in colored light Mario Kiesenhofer's images reflect a party culture in which the techno scene of the 1990s is experiencing a revival while simultaneously making a highly resistant and political claim. The club becomes an inclusive place of protest, the dance floor a stage for queerness in increasingly illiberal systems. In addition to these photographic works, Kiesenhofer places the new video installation Reflections (feat. Reflektra, 2022/23) at the centre of the exhibition.
Mario Kiesenhofer's cautious pictorial approach captures an underground scene: portraits and detail shots meet collective energy, ecstasy and queer protest movement – from this field of tension he generates a project for the tresor that transforms the exhibition space into a queer treasure trove.
Mario Kiesenhofer is the recipient of a 2023 State Scholarship for Photography from the Federal Ministry of Arts, Culture, Public Service and Sport.
Opening on Tuesday, 24 October 2023 at 7.30 pm
Live-DJ-Set with Avtomat (PL) at 9 pm