Hans Knapp - What is it like?
Duration: 12 April - 18 May 2014
Artist: Hans Knapp
Curator: Valerio Dehò
With the solo exhibition WHAT IS IT LIKE?, Merano arte is presenting the extraordinary oeuvre of Hans Knapp, with drawings, sketches, and collages that he made over the course of his life. At the same time, a selection of photographic works, objects, and installations will be shown at Diözesanmuseum Brixen (April 11 to May 31, 2014).
The approach of Hans Knapp - drawing and collage - does not follow the idea of narration. There is no story to tell, not even as a pretense for a narration in pictures. Drawing is part of the artist's everyday life. It runs through his life like a golden thread. He needs it, just like he needs his daily bread. He is obsessive, as are other artists who are landmarks in the field of drawing. Hans Knapp stages that which could be, and he plays with the non-referential nature of the significants. Buildings play an important role, i. e. constructions that were erected for non-identifiable purposes, but also memories and emotions that the artist has borne within ever since his childhood days, for his art is a kind of diary of the subconscious in which he writes something down every day.
The drawings shown here are mounted on huge white sheets, like a collage, and their composition has interesting aspects that are connected to void and silence. It is just this alternation between void and abundance that gives the viewer the chance to fill the gaps with his expectation and thus to add something that does not belong to the artist, but to him alone. Since the collages are not made up of newspaper clippings or encountered pictures, but of motifs from the artist's own drawings, they rate high in his oeuvre. Knapp's approach liberates the motifs from the roles assigned to them and brings them into play with a new function and perception, in an attempt to capture the ever-fleeting moment. For Hans Knapp, drawing is a technique for processing his thoughts, which are always bound up with philosophical reflections and are centered on the great questions of mankind. He regards it as a means and an end to express his creative, essentially intellectual approach.
Hans Knapp, born 1945 in Brixen, studied at Akademie der bildenden Künste in Munich and Vienna and was long a teacher at various schools in South Tyrol. At an early age, he started dealing with drawing as an artistic means of expression and with philosophical problems. He made many drawings as well as sketches for pictures, objects, and installations. Thus, an archive evolved, growing faster than the projects could be implemented. Solo exhibitions were held at ar/ge kunst Galerie Museum in Bolzano (1993), Galerie Prisma in Bolzano (2005), kunstforum Unterland in Neumarkt/Egna (2007), StadtGalerie in Brixen (2011), etc. Knapp's works were also included in many group exhibitions, including 2003 at Diözesanmuseum Brixen (exhibition "Kunst und Sakralraum des Südtiroler Künstlerbundes"), at Landesausstellung 2009 Labyrinth :: Freiheit as well as 2011 in the context of an artistic exchange between the partner cities Regensburg and Brixen. Hans Knapp lives and works in Brixen.