Gottfried Helnwein is one of the most well-known contemporary artists from Vienna, recognized for his hyper-realistic watercolors depticing wounded and mistreated children. He has consistently pursued the subject of the human condition throughout his career, using the image of the wounded child to approach psychological and sociological anxiety, as well as historical and political topics. What I love about his work, though, is how striking and immersive they are on a purely aesthetic realm-- they are not imploded by the weight of symbolism or concept. Helnwein is part of a tradition going back to the 18th century, a world populated by grimacing sculptures expressing the weight of an age and the isolation of people in wartime and tragedy. These images haunt long after you see them in person.
Helnwein was awarded the master-class prize of the University of Visual Art, Vienna, and he currently lives and works in Ireland and Los Angeles.
Curated by Lauren YS