Elke Krystufek
Proper Use

Viennese artist Elke Krystufek is one of the most provocative personalities in contemporary art. She gained international acclaim with her intense, sometimes painfully physical performances, videos, paintings, and photo collages. Her work consistently provokes strong reactions. Most often, her own, whether naked or not, body is the subject. Shamelessly, she reveals all aspects of herself: life and art are equal to her.

Elke Krystufek is fascinated by the often stark contrast between the image we have of ourselves and what we want to show to others, and how others truly perceive us. Nothing is spared from the spectator: the contents of her toilet bowl, a bucket of vomit, and especially her genitals. We see the bags under her eyes grow, her body thicken and then slim down again. We see her laugh and cry. Although she seems to reveal much about herself, it is she who determines what is known about her and what is not, keeping her a mystery to the public. In her work, she criticizes, among other things, the way religion and media deal with the body.

For MDD, Krystufek has developed Proper Use: an exhibition that functions as a Gesamtkunstwerk and in which her most recent themes are addressed alongside her typical subjects. However, this time the scandalous and spectacular atmosphere that usually accompanies her work does not dominate. Central works include the two halves of the brain and the word God, elaborated in sixteen languages. The brain, the subject of psychoanalysis, seems to be the true home of all fears and desires, and of the idea of ‘God’. Interior design is seen as an extension of fantasies, hatred, and love: a bookshelf in the shape of a swastika stands next to a Menorah, an immense Jewish candlestick. Thus, with Proper Use, she further analyzes our hidden or unconscious drives, manipulated by religion, media, language, origin, or patriarchy.

Museum Dhondt-Dhaenens

Museumlaan 14
9831 Deurle