Auction House

Auction: Evening Sale - Contemporary Art

27. November 2023, 7:00 pm

Object overview


Erwin Wurm*

(Bruck 1954)

„"Liegen auf Elternhaus"“
bronze, silver plated
36 x 77 x 42 cm
monogrammed and numbered at the side: E.W. 5/5


private property, Austria

Estimate: € 35.000 - 70.000
Result: € 46.200 (incl. fees)
Auction is closed.

With the “readymades” of the beginning/middle of the twentieth century, the customary definition of sculpture changed radically. The boundaries between genres became blurred, and to this day the concept of sculpture is constantly being expanded and put into question. Erwin Wurm, one of the most sought-after contemporary artists, deals intensively with this topic and, in a wide variety of approaches, challenges the viewing habits and socially determined patterns of our society. Wurm’s diverse works range from temporary human sculptures (One-Minute Sculptures) and absurdly dimensioned everyday objects (such as “Narrow House” or “Police Hat”), marks left in dust, dressed furniture, cucumber and sausage sculptures, all the way to what are probably his best-known objects – his fat cars and houses. Wurm disarranges and deforms familiar everyday objects, reducing their functions and sculptural qualities to absurdity.

Cars and houses that fall out of their usual role through a distortion of form and humanisation seem to the artist particularly well-suited for this purpose.
Wurm attracted a great deal of attention with “Narrow House” (2010), an extremely narrowed-down model of his parents’ home in Graz – including the interior furnishings. Between 2005 and 2016, several “Melting Houses” were created, including deformed models of the Flatiron Building, the Guggenheim and the Wittgenstein House; for one exhibition in Munich, Wurm even placed a small, already melting, butter house on a slice of brown bread.

Confusion as a creative strategy is the artist’s creed:
“When people laugh it can be good or bad. But humour is not the centre of my work. My work is very much related to the absurd. I love absurdist theatre. I think our reality is so fucking crazy as it is that it’s necessary to look at it from as many angles as possible. That's my recipe.” (“The artist who swallowed the world”, Peter Marino in an interview with Erwin Wurm, in: Interview no. 534, Winter 2020, New York USA, pp. 88 - 103)

(Ina Waldstein)