PRINT Summer 2006


UNLIKE MANY ARTISTS TODAY who scavenge from every last scrap of modernist production, Ulla von Brandenburg has leaped over that period of utopian experimentalism, alighting instead in the preceding century. Von Brandenburg is attracted to the sophistication, escapism, extreme aestheticism, world-weariness, and fashionable despair that characterized the literary and artistic climate of the European fin de siècle (though in practice she looks equally to German Romanticism and the baroque metaphor of theatrum mundi). Rather than longing for ideological absolutes, the apparent impetus for the ongoing investigation of modernism, von Brandenburg is drawn to the sense of uncertainty associated with this previous moment’s expectation (rather than the actuality) of change, and how this anxiety manifested itself.

Tableaux vivants, circus motifs, and references to the occult as well as theater and

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