Tobias Rehberger Holy Silence
Edition of 6 copies
Each edition is signed by the artist.
87 x 59 x 10 cm - 34.3 x 23.2 x 3.9 in. closed (approx.)
Diameter 180 cm - 70.8 in. open (approx.)
11 plates of different laser-cut materials
When asked to design a publication, Rehberger chose to make the kind of stand-up publication that the smallest of children play with. The rigid and yet “pages” of Holy Silence are constructed so as to fit something like the elements in Charles and Ray Eames’ 1952 House of Cards, a toy that is also a piece of complex engineering. Rehberger’s materials range from anodized aluminum, acrylic plexiglass, MDF, and plastic to plywood, resin, rubber, and copper. Realization of the work involved both virtual and handmade models that explored all possible geometric and technical configurations. The issues that pervade Rehberger’s thinking are neatly crystallized in his publications. Fusion of roles such as artist, author, producer, and writer, as well as an inversion of order and the dissolution of “normal” functions, achieve their masterly synthesis in Holy Silence.
The anecdotal nature of the medium acquires deeper significance when the nature of the images is studied. Far from the idyllic climate of Christmas, Rehberger deconstructs childhood in visions of hangings, grimacing pumpkins, and cartoon-like babies, with a sinister quality, analogous to artist Maurizio Cattelan’s de-sanctified visions of youth. Rehberger’s play with the work of his colleagues, subtle reference to the 1994 house of Jorge Pardo, or the material virtuosity of artists such as Reinhard Mucha, add other layers to the piece. Holy Silence is testimony to the the true artist’s ability to take any commission, from salt cellar to skyscraper, and turn it into a timeless work of art.