Elisabeth Oberrauch. Cabinet of Natural Curiosities
Duration: 03 May - 02 June 2013
Artist: Elisabeth Oberrauch
Curator: Valerio Dehò
It seems as though Elisabeth Oberrauch were collecting ideas and projects for a future museum of art and natural curiosities.
Her exhibition “Cabinet of Natural Curiosities” is a very special one: she creates natural objects, from fir cones to corals, out of paper, her favorite material which has brought her worldwide recognition. That way, she collects plants and other living beings and sets them up in her own, self-designed showcases. The paper, masterly shaped, adds elegance and matter, but also an extraordinary lightness to the shapes. Oberrauch uses paper, which is also a natural substance, to reproduce them and thus to create a parallel universe. This artistic imitation of nature actually leads back to nature. Her delicate paper objects are presented as though in a taxonomy of natural beauty.
All in all, the exhibition of Elisabeth Oberrauch’s works reminds us of a cabinet of artificial or natural curiosities, like those that existed at various royal European courts. But also of a museum, meant to counteract oblivion, created in a place where the given miracles have priority over their artistic reproduction.
The illusionism of these mimetic designs leads to a conflict between the paper and the natural object, both of which become the core of a new passage in the history of art. Elisabeth Oberrauch’s work follows the tradition of man’s appropriation of nature. It is artificial in the most refined sense of the word, a creation torn between nature and culture, finding its perfect synthesis in art.