Karl Unterfrauner presents his photographic works in various formats perfectly arranged in pairs, which introduce a dialogue with the spaces of the gallery itself. With the concise title “Trees”, he exhibits photos of leafy trunks free of plants and background, which seem to wave on the walls. The origin of the themes and their initial context remain hidden to the observer: these representations should not be interpreted in the traditional sense of a “window” onto another reality, but as border lines between imaginary places that belong neither to nature nor to art.
“Just like ornamental structures at the border of abstractionism, the images emerge from nothing and reach the walls with an effect that makes them seem without context or origin. What previously occurred between photography and objects far from an art concept (such as, for example, heaters, carpets or garage doors, present in the artist’s work up to now), between spaces devoted to art and spaces out of art, seems to be more generalised here, referring to naturalness and artifice only in a very vague sense”, affirms Martin Prinzhorn in his review of the catalogue.
Karl Unterfrauner’s photographic works should be interpreted according to the exhibit’s character and historical context of conceptual photography. Martin Prinzhorn writes: “It is no longer a matter of understanding how the external world is transposed to the art world, whether truth and authenticity are reflected in the artwork, but of understanding whether truth and authenticity are expressed as a basically complex and problematic concept, which, in conclusion, may not exist at all”.