Carola Dertnig, . . VANILLA FUDGE . . , 2015, photo on primed canvas, 57 × 55".

Carola Dertnig

Galerie Andreas Huber

Carola Dertnig, . . VANILLA FUDGE . . , 2015, photo on primed canvas, 57 × 55".

In Vienna, the ghost of Actionism appears at regular intervals—whether in the form of pride in this homegrown avant-garde or disdain for its phallocentric ways. The iconic films and photographs of bodily aggressions and transgressions—both real and fictive—that defined this movement are vividly inscribed into the collective artistic unconscious in a country still contending with its wartime complicity with National Socialism and its deeply entrenched patriarchal structures. Carola Dertnig’s recent exhibition “. . . at least I did not rob a bank . . .” tried to move away from this historical burden to reframe Actionism as a citation through which to expand the contemporary possibilities of painting and performance.

Rather than returning directly to the abject materiality of those bodily gestures, however, Dertnig considered the celluloid apparatus of their “capture”

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