Hannes Priesch: REVELATION (PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH OF THE USA AND PRESIDENT JAQUES CHIRAC OF FRANCE IN A PHONE CONVERSATION BEFORE THE BEGINNING OF IRAQ WAR 2), 2012
geboren 1954 in Volkersdorf, Österreich, lebt und arbeite in New York und Semriach, Österreich. Priesch studierte an der Akademie der Bildenden Künste in Wien und war Assistent von Max Weiler. Er war 1983 an der Gründung der Künstlergruppe REM beteiligt, 2001 gründete er „b-environments“. In den letzten Jahren setzt er sich mit politischen Themen und deren Überschneidungen zu religiösen Glaubenswelten auseinander. 1985 erhielt er den Kunstpreis der Diözese Graz-Seckau. Im KULTUM wurde Priesch in den Ausstellungen „Hannes Priesch: ICH ALS MOSES ALS GOTTVATER“ (2006), „GESTURES OF INFINITY. Religion und Emotion in einer globalisierten Welt“ (2007), „RELIQTE“ (2010), „IRREALIGIOUS! Parallelwelt Religion in der Kunst“ (2011/12), „reliqte, reloaded: Zum Erbe christlicher Bildwelten heute” (2015/16), „VULGATA. 77 Zugriffe auf die Bibel“ (2017) und “Glaube Liebe Hoffnung” (2018) gezeigt.
born in Volkersdorf, Austria, in 1954; lives and works in New York and Semriach, Austria. Priesch studied at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna and was Max Weiler’s assistant. In 1983, he co-founded the artists’ group REM; in 2001, he founded “b-environments“. In recent years, he has examined political subjects and their intersections with religious worlds of faith. He received the Art Award of the Diocese of Graz-Seckau in 1985. Priesch’s works were shown in the KULTUM in the exhibitions “Hannes Priesch: ICH ALS MOSES ALS GOTTVATER“ (2006), “Gestures of Infinity“ (2007), “RELIQTE” (2010) and “IRREALIGIOUS! Parallelwelt Religion in der Kunst“ (2011/12).
Hannes Priesch: REVELATION (GEORGE W. BUSH OF THE USA AND PRESIDENT JAQUES CHIRAC OF FRANCE IN A PHONE CONVERSATION BEFORE THE BEGINNING OF IRAQ WAR 2), 2012
In the end of numerous armed conflicts in the past ten years which were dedicated to the politics of President George W. Bush (2000 – 2008), which in their turn were driven by Christian fundamentalism, Hannes Priesch painted his last “Bush picture”: A recording of a phone conversation between the French President and the President of the United States shortly before the Iraq War on 20 March 2003, which was disclosed to the public, merges as a text surface into the softly red picture surface of Fra Angelico’s “Annunciation” in San Marco in Florence, a red telephone handset is hanging from the picture.
The so called “Coalition of the Willing” bombed selected cities in Iraq, the 3rd Persian Gulf War ended with the fall of Saddam Hussein's regime. The reason for war—that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction—has meanwhile been proved wrong by historians, yet the telephone conversation between the two Western leaders offers an “oath of disclosure” that reveals the crusade mentality in the beginning of the 3rd millennium. The ecumenism of the two leaders is restricted to the worship of the one (Christian) God. In Revelation 20:8 two peoples are referred to as “Gog and Magog” that are freed by Satan on the Day of Judgment. They join forces with him but are defeated by Christ in the end. Here, the “red telephone”, which became the symbol of the last connection that could prevent the world from the apocalyptic nuclear disaster, is turned into an apocalyptically charged communication medium of the two leaders and heads of state. Yet the wellknown “Annunciation to Mary” in Fra Angelico’s visual language forms a red and golden contrast, it not in the least legitimates any suggestion of the hideous face of fundamentalism.
Text aus | Text from: Johannes Rauchenberger: Gott hat kein Museum. Religion in der Kunst des beginnenden XXI. Jahrhunderts. | No Museum Has God. Religion in Art in the Early 21st Century. (IKON. Bild+Theologie, hg. von | ed. by Alex Stock und Reinhard Hoeps), Verlag Ferdinand Schoeningh, Paderborn 2015, S. | p. 550-551.