One Mess Gallery was initiated in 2015, it is characterized by collaborative and performative formats.
The art collective One Mess Gallery participated for example in the show "On the new" at Belvedere 21
incorporating artworks into the structure of a dinosaur, installed a booth for security concepts,
the “OMG Armory Safety Solutions” at the art fair Parallel Vienna, built the bureaucratic-performative
Installation “Passierschein K2 - Organisation du Melangement Gouvernmental” at the Kunstraum Super
and placed touchable sculptures on bathing towels in their exhibition “Oberfläche Mit Gefühl” during
the 365 art festival.
The Off-Space One Mess Gallery is located in the garbage room of the Palais Montenuovo, opposite of the Federal Chancellery.
During exhibitions the waste bins are positioned outside the entrance on the side walk,
thereby raising questions on elitism, usage, appropriation and ownership.
Wait – just a little bit longer
On the works of Tobias Pilz
Veronika Hauer, in Bilder, Fotografie/Objekt/Bild(Raum), Fotogalerie Wien 272/2013, 2013
Translation by Charlotte Allen
At first I consider a photo like this* to be one that was captured in a moment, composed by chance. I perceive it as a snapshot, the elements of which have been brought together by unconnected authors over a long period of time. Doesn’t every site exist mainly as an outcome of an endless stream of (un)intentional human action? But maybe we don’t look at these interventions in detail until one element vehemently makes its mark in the wrong place. In this case I’m referring to cardboard boxes, of the sort that are used in our daily lives as transport or archive containers for the goods that we possess (or would like to have). In Tobias Pilz’s photographic work these casings appear as objects, positioned in homogeneous groups in the centre of the picture. Take ‘Bahnhofsstrasse’, for example, in which Tobias Pilz changes the boxes’ arrangement, their format, and by using a subtle aesthetic trick, such as a white cross in the corner, their composition too. Pilz uses this same aesthetic gimmick or staging intervention in the discreet composition of the pictorial layers in which these clamorous elements are placed. Photographed in various settings, indoors and out, these objects always appear in the absence of a deliveryman or recipient. The object is thereby released from its narrative context and given an existence beyond its commodity status and an independence from ownership. This existence as an autonomous object will not last for long but it is captured here.
At first I take an object like this** to be a found one. I assume it to be a bizarre object that fell of a truck and was then run over by another truck. Or an implosion broke through the form, turned it inside out and sucked the product print through to the inside. The counterintuitive approach. Tobias Pilz has convoluted the blueprint of a functionally efficient cuboid that serves as a basis for many systems of stackable (lightweight) packaging, by adding another side. This form has defied the limits of its functionality.
Tobias Pilz’s untitled object of 2012 may at first appear like a sculpture from the classic repertoire of Minimal Art. Yet this sculpture, with its sideways bulge, is covered in a special material called Tolex - a type of practical and reasonably priced artificial leather used mainly for guitar amplifiers. The sculpture’s form reflects this as it is based specifically on a mass-produced amp from the company Marshall. Pilz describes how such amplifiers are ‘linked to many dreams and emotions’ for guitar players.(1) Popular culture, with its background of (often unrealized) hopes, thus collides with Minimal Art in this piece. Its predecessors are the cardboard boxes that Pilz extended and transformed into objects that are neither open nor closed - again playing with a minimal form that has been made more complex.
Although Pilz frequently constructs or choreographs sculptures and photographs, his photo piece Baño, is a ‘found photograph’.(2) Its harmonious colour scheme seems to indicate that it illustrates a model although it actually depicts the bathroom facilities at a youth hostel, described by the artist as being somewhere in Guatemala. It is a puzzling setting, simultaneously personal and anonymous. While you can clearly appreciate the careful positioning of the decorative tiles on the wall, there are no personal objects in this apparently intimate situation - after all, nobody leaves their toothbrush in the communal bathroom. The image also contains references to abstraction: the blue mirrors could equally be monochrome paintings. And narrative elements are implied in the background where we can see an array of objects, probably cleaning equipment, on a type of pedestal. Stage set and still life are combined here into a composition that is full of mysteries but at the same time remains unspectacular.
1 In conversation with the author, Atelier Tobias Pilz, Vienna, 25 November 2016.