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Atelier Van Lieshout – AVL Exhibition in Vienna

AVL, artist’s collective whose interventions touch on art, design and architecture was founded by the Dutch artist Joep Van Lieshout, born 1963 in Raventein, Holland. Principally the group is known for its large scale portable sculpture designs. One of my favourite works is their “Wellness Skull” (2007), a giant skull made for rest and relaxation (see photo). The neck contains a small bathroom, and the head a sauna which releases vapour through the eyes when in use.


Another of their famous skulls is called the “Sensory Deprivation Skull” (2007), constructed after careful study. It is built so as to take up a minimum of space, while allowing for sufficient space to relax. Here one can forget about all noise and bother from the outside world.

The work “The Heads, Claudia & Hermann” (2005), consists of three giant hollow heads. Claudia is the feminine element of the triad, with dark hair and eyes Hermann, one of the masculine elements is blonde and blue-eyed, while the third head, Tom, has a dark complexion. The three heads together symbolize human diversity, and have been used in all manner of ways in different expos: as a bar, as kiosks or information points.

Three other outstanding works by the collective include: “Bikini Bar” (2006) a female torso attired in bikini, which is an agreeable and curious place to get together and relax.

“Bar Rectum” (2005), is a huge sculpture which mirrors the digestive system, and finishes in a giant anus. It begins with the tongue, passes through the stomach, small intestine and large intestine and finishes with the emergency exit: the anus.

“Darwin” (2008), is a large purple sperm which features a little bed and a nightstand in the sperm’s head. This great work symbolizes reproduction, power and survival.

These last three marvels are currently on display in Vienna. So don’t think twice, rent apartments in Vienna. The exhibit runs until the 2nd of May in the Modern Art Museum “Kunst Stiftung Ludwing Wien (Munok)” Museumsplatz 1, A-1070 Vienna, and the telephone number is +43152500. Visit this marvellous exhibition, and delight in the magnificent and playful large-scale sculptures and surprising design.