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Steinbrener/Dempf & Huber is an Austrian artist group consisting of the sculptor Christoph Steinbrener, the photographer and graphic designer Rainer Dempf, and the architect Martin Huber.

Public projects and exhibitions

In 2005, “The Delete!” project in Vienna’s Neubaugasse involved covering all commercial signs such as business signs or advertising posters with yellow paper. The following project series Copy/Paste, took the opposite approach: advertising, corporate logos, and PR posters were made clearly visible, albeit with a shift of context and deliberately misplaced, for example in 2007 with a feigned conversion of the Church of St Ursula in Linz into a Starbucks store (Pass the Buck). In 2008, Jesuitenkosmos concealed Andrea Pozzo’s ceiling painting in Vienna’s Jesuit Church beneath a modern secular heavenly structure. The method of displacement led to the 2009 exhibition Trouble in Paradise at Vienna’s Schönbrunn zoo, in which Steinbrener/Dempf & Huber installed foreign objects (cars, toxic waste barrels, railway tracks) in the animals’ enclosures, highlighting the confrontation of nature and civilization. The Freeze! exhibition that opened at the Vienna Museum of Natural History in June 2012 was an attempt to replace the romanticizing view of animal depictions with a realistic view of the modern conditions of growing civilization. For the show, Steinbrener/Dempf revived an old display used in natural science, the diorama. In collaboration with the museum’s taxidermists, they presented snapshots of wild animals in urban settings that are usually only familiar from Internet videos or exotic travel documentaries. In 2015, they mounted an ibex on the head of the forty-three meters tall Bismarck monument in Hamburg, drawing attention to resurgent German nationalism – the title of the piece: Capricorn Two. In 2016, almost at the same time, the Viennese artist collective opened the two highly conspicuous “comments” on the architecture of their city, the sculptures Sign of the Times (on the façade of the Hotel InterContinental) and Lunch Atop (on the roof of a Viennese high-rise).

 Studio works

Steinbrener/Dempf & Huber have created series of large-format photographs in recent years. In one series, images of dioramas made in collaboration with the taxidermists of the Natural History Museum in Steinbrener/Dempf & Huber’s studio. In another they developed “miniature dioramas”, that also serve as three-dimensional sketches. The carefully arranged Tierstücke (animal pieces) in the classical 17th-century Flemish style focused exclusively on the figured representation of mounted animals, using staged gestures and postures to unite elements that are zoologically incongruous.

Works

2017 «Steinbrener/Dempf & Huber, Arbeiten 2007–2017»,  Kunstraum Dornbirn, Thomas Häusle (Hg.), Verlag für moderne Kunst, Wien

2017 «Das Bismarckdenkmal im alten Elbpark», Heino Grunert, Jörg Schilling, Christoph Schwarzkopf, Hamburger Bauhefte

2016 «Sign of the Times», Video von Niels Pfeiffer

2015 «Capricorn Two» Video, der Architekt Christoph Winkler und Lisa Kosok, Direktorin des Europäischen Hansemuseums Lübeck im Gespräch mit Christoph Steinbrener Moderation: Sven Tetzlaff in der Körber-Stiftung-Hamburg.

2014 «Hier & Jetzt/Hinc & Nunc» 10 künstlerische Interventionen im Jubiläumsjahr – 900 Jahre Stift Klosterneuburg

2013 «Drei im Blau – Kunst und Glaube», Gustav Schörghofer, Residenz-Verlag

2013 «Salon der Hoffnung», Kunsthalle Wien

2012 «Public Art Vienna, Aufbrüche – Werke – Interventionen», Roland Schöny (Hg.), Verlag für moderne Kunst Nürnberg

2012 «Politik trifft Kunst», Anja Besand (Hrsg.), Bpb, Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung

2012 «Kartographisches Denken» Christian Reder (Hg.): Edition Transfer bei SpringerWienNewYork

2011 «Parabol #6 ,Don´t dare» curated by section.a

2009 «Trouble in Paradise» Skulpturen in den Gehegen des Tiergarten Schönbrunn, mit Beiträgen von Ernst Strouhal, Dorothee Bauerle-Willert, Dagmar Schratter u.a., Orange  Press, Freiburg

2009 «Wem gehört die Stadt, Wien – Kunst im öffentlichen Raum seit 1968», Verlag für moderne Kunst Nürnberg

2009 «City_System_s», Betrachtungen, Strukturen, Interventionen, Pamela Batar (Hg.), Angela Heide, Art Minutes Publishing, Wien

2008 «Public art a Trieste e dintorni», Silvana Editorale, Mailand

2007 «Schaurausch» Paolo Bianchi, Martin Sturm, Folio-Verlag

2007 «Instant Urbanism»- Revolver-Verlag, Basel

2006 «UD.A», Tendencias actuales des Deseno Austriaco, Fundacion Canal, Madrid

2005 «Delete» – Dokumentarfilm von Erwin Wagenhofer

2005 «Delete», Siegfried Mattl (Hrsg.), mit Beiträgen von Karl-Heinz Stierle, Tom Holert, Chantal Mouffe, James Donald, Berhard Kellner, Klaus Theweleit; Orange Press, Freiburg

2003 «Operation Figurini», Ausstellungszeitung mit Beiträgen u.a. Erika Weinzierl, Anton Pelinka, Rainer Fuchs, Martin Prinzhorn, Catrin Pichler

2003 «Operation Figurini» – Dokumentarfilm, Regie: Erwin Wagenhofer, Produktion: Allegro-Film, Wien

2001 «Unternehmen Capricorn», Hans Ulrich Reck, Christian Reder ua., Triton-Verlag, Wien

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