Kiki Kogelnik

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Kiki Kogelnik, Female Robot , 1964, oil and acrylic on canvas, 123 × 184 cm. Kiki Kogelnik Foundation

Kiki Kogelnik (born January 22, 1935 in Graz ; † February 1, 1997 in Vienna ) was an Austrian artist , or the only Austrian pop artist. Her work includes painting , sculpture , graphics , installation (art) and an examination of unusual materials, such as used bombs or vinyl cloths. Kogelnik is described as the Austrian representative of Pop Art , even if she did not consider herself a Pop Art artist and one of the pioneers of internationally oriented performance art.

life and work


In the heyday of the ArtClub, the early 1950s, Kiki Kogelnik was not yet in Vienna. Kogelnik began her artistic training in Vienna in 1954 at the University of Applied Arts and moved to the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna the following year . During the years at the academy, Kogelnik, together with Arnulf Rainer , Wolfgang Hollegha , Josef Mikl , Markus Prachensky and Maria Lassnig, belonged to the group of young avant-garde around the St. Stephan Gallery (from 1964 Galerie next St. Stephan ) under the direction of Msgr Otto Mauer . Her official artistic start was after four years of study at the academy. The first extensive section of Kiki Kogelnik's work includes abstract images. She took part in the gallery's first group exhibitions and presented abstract works, some of which were influenced by Serge Poliakoff of the École de Paris . In 1958/1959, Kogelnik spent a long time in Paris and made friends with the American artist Sam Francis , who persuaded them to move to America in 1961 . The phase of her abstract paintings was essentially completed when she moved to New York in 1961.


At the age of twenty-six, Kiki Kogelnik decided to stay in the United States for a longer period of time. She spent the first year in Santa Monica , California , but moved to New York in 1962 . In the New York studios she came across the works of abstract expressionism everywhere. She parted with her previous style of painting. Pop Art was just about to institutionalize itself as a style, but by no means the dominant view. There she became part of a close artist group that included Roy Lichtenstein , Claes Oldenburg , Andy Warhol , Larry Rivers , Tom Wesselmann and others. "Pop became a way of life", and with her extravagant outfits and headgear, Kogelnik itself became a walking happening . Kogelnik's work during this period was heavily influenced by the colors and materials of Pop Art, and she produced numerous colorful, euphoric space art works. In contrast to Pop Art artists, she avoided the glorification of commerce and the depiction of everyday objects, although she was known to favor plastic and the artificial as subjects. In summary, one can say that it did not quite reflect the colorful, glamorous paintings on the advertising aesthetics of the international developments of the 1960s.

“When it came to color, it was important to me to create dissonances, something aggressive, artificial” (Kiki Kogelnik).

In the early 1960s, Kogelnik began to cut out lifelike stencils of her artist friends from wrapping paper in order to transfer them onto the canvas of her paintings. These stencils became independent works of art made of vinyl in the 1970s as the "hangings" , which were presented on department store stands. In 1966, Kogelnik married the oncologist George Schwarz in London . After the birth of her son Mono, she returned to New York in 1967. In 1969 Kogelnik conceived a moon happening in the Viennese gallery next to St. Stephan . During the live broadcast of the moon landing of Apollo 11 , she produced a series of 500 moon thematic screen printing . Kiki Kogelnik was occupied with pop-related paintings for almost a decade. With the "Hangings" around 1970, human figures cut out, this period is completed.

Kiki Kogelnik in the early 1960s, New York


Hangings - uniformity and facelessness

The "Hangings", which first appeared around 1970, represent the end of Kiki's period of pop-related works. On the other hand, they also mark the end of the euphoria : the belief in space travel legitimized exclusively by the urge to research and pioneering spirit was due to the uncovering of solid military interests shocked by her. The production technique of the "hangings" goes back to the cultivation of a work step in the preparation of the paintings. The life-size human figures corresponded to the templates she had made to transfer the figure into the picture surface. Instead of wrapping paper, they were now made of thick, colorful vinyl film. Shortly after the three-dimensional prototypes, in 1971, the “hangings” were translated back into the medium of painting, without changing the iconographic disposition.

Images of women

Kiki Kogelnik used the imagery of commercial graphics and the costumes of her campaigners looked as if they were taken from old fashion journals. Their postures were based on targeted self-staging , on the repetition of recognized gestures that, first shaped by stars and then disseminated by anonymous mannequins , merged into the general gesture vocabulary. Her women's works dealt with the criticism of the role of women in advertising . As reported in the text by the Kunsthalle Krems : “In the 1970s, Kogelnik responded to the first wave of feminism with images of women in which she ironically dismantled female clichés and paraphrased sexual attributes and ideals of beauty from the media world.” Addressing feminist issues with irony, humor, and a cool pop aesthetic was unique to Kogelnik's work at the time. In 1974 she began to work occasionally with ceramics and used the plastic form to expand the picture surface. In 1978 she produced the 16 mm b / w short film CBGB with the writer and punk musician Jim Carroll in a role.

“Kiki Kogelnik's art cannot be divided into a painterly oeuvre. Between painting and three-dimensional objects, sculptures, pictures, ceramics, flowing transitions are visible and indicate their own spatial visual language. "

- Pagan Warlamis

1980s to 1990s

In the 1980s, dismembered human bodies, everyday objects, and signs began to fill Kogelnik's pictures. In the work cycle “Expansions” she used ceramic elements that were shown together with the canvas as a complete work. In later works, the human body was increasingly fragmented and manipulated until, in the 1990s, most of the works showed very abstract faces. During this time, Kogelnik also produced a series of glass sculptures, drawings and graphics in which she wanted to comment on commerce and decorative topics in the field of art, walking a tightrope between art and the kitsch newspaper.

Death and artistic estate

Kiki Kogelnik died on February 1, 1997 in Vienna of complications from cancer and was buried in the family grave in Bleiburg. The Austrian gallery Belvedere showed a comprehensive retrospective in 1998 . After the artist's death, the “Kiki Kogelnik Foundation”, an American private foundation , was founded with headquarters in Vienna and New York. The Foundation preserves and archives the artistic legacy of Kiki Kogelnik and supports exhibition and research activities.


A stolen work was found outdoors in 2013 after 17 years; a work missing in February 2020 reappeared that same month.

Solo exhibitions (selection)

  • 1961: Galerie next St. Stephan, Vienna, Austria
  • 1964: Jerrold Morris International Gallery Limited, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • 1965: Austrian Institute, New York, USA
  • 1967: Art comes from artificial, Gallery next to St. Stephan, Vienna, Austria
  • 1969: Moonhappening Apollo II, Galerie next St. Stephan, Vienna, Austria
  • 1973: retrospective. Kiki Kogelnik, Künstlerhaus Klagenfurt, Austria
  • 1977: Jack Gallery, New York, USA
  • 1978: Kornfeld Gallery, Zurich, Switzerland
  • 1980: Graphics, Gallery One, Montclair State University - College of the Arts, Montclair, New Jersey, USA
  • 1982: Ulysses Gallery, Vienna, Austria
  • 1983: BAWAG Foundation, Vienna, Austria
  • 1986: Broadway Windows, New York, USA
  • 1989: Kiki Kogelnik. Retrospective, Kärntner Landesgalerie, Klagenfurt, Austria
  • 1990: Inside the Clone Factory, Henry Gallery, Washington DC, USA
  • 1992: Expansions - 30 Year New York, Ernst Museum, Budapest, Hungary; Gallery Úluv, Prague, Czech Republic
  • 1993: Palac Kultury I Nauki, Warsaw, Poland; Palac Sztuki, Krakow, Poland
  • 1994: Expansions / Sterotypes, Metsna Galerija, Ljubljana, Slovenia
  • 1995: Glass & Graphics, Gallery next Gritti, Venice, Italy; Venetian Heads, Austrian Gallery Belvedere, Vienna, Austria
  • 1996: Kiki Kogelnik and the Venetian Heads, Chicago Athenaeum, Chicago, Illinois, USA; Hanging, MAK - Museum of Applied Arts, Vienna, Austria
  • 1998: Retrospective, 1935–1997, Österreichische Galerie Belvedere, Vienna, Austria; Kärntner Landesgalerie, Klagenfurt, Austria
  • 2003: Baby remember my name, Art Herberstein, Herberstein Castle, Austria
  • 2004: Palais Liechtenstein, Feldkirch, Austria
  • 2005: Kiki Kogelnik. Happy Birthday, Künstlerhaus Klagenfurt, Austria; Werner Berg Gallery, Bleiburg, Austria
  • 2006: Strictly KIKI - Perfectly KOGELNIK, gallery at the Albertina, Vienna, Austria
  • 2012: Early works: 1964–1970, Simone Subal Gallery, New York, USA; I have seen the future, Hamburger Kunstverein , Hamburg, Germany
  • 2013: Retrospective, Kunsthalle Krems , Austria
  • 2014: No Coca-Cola, Johann König, Berlin, Germany; Cuts, Fissures and Identity: Works from the 1960s and 1970s, Simone Subal Gallery, New York, USA
  • 2015: Fly Me to the Moon, Modern Art Oxford , Oxford, United Kingdom
  • 2016: Kiki Kogelnik, Koenig Galerie, Berlin, Germany
  • 2020: Kiki Kogelnik. Les cyborgs ne sont pas respectueuses, Musée des beaux-arts, La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland

Group exhibitions (selection)

  • 1958: Galerie next St. Stephan, Vienna, Austria
  • 1960: Galerie Blauer Apfel, Oslo, Norway
  • 1964: PVI Gallery, New York, USA
  • 1965: Van Bovenkamp Gallery, New York, USA
  • 1965: Pop Op Art - Abstract Expressionism, Gertrude Kastle Gallery, Detroit, USA
  • 1965: 29th Biennial of Contemporary American Painting, Corcoran Gallery, Washington DC, USA
  • 1966: Austrian Artists in the United States, Austrian Institute, New York, USA
  • 1967: Accrochage, Galerie next St. Stephan, Vienna, Austria
  • 1968: Contemporary Austrian Art, Zagreb, Croatia
  • 1970: Progressive Art in Austria 1970, Galerie Kaiser, Vienna, Austria
  • 1972: GEDOK American Women Artists Show, Kunsthaus Hamburg, Hamburg, Germany
  • 1974: Homage to Msgr. Otto Mauer, Galerie Ulysses, Vienna, Austria
  • 1976: Bicentennial Banners, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden , Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC, USA; National Singapore Museum, Republic of Singapore
  • 1977: Spacescapes, Sid Deutsch Gallery, New York, USA
  • 1978: Museum of Drawers, Kunsthaus Zürich , Zürich, Switzerland; Los Angeles Institute of Contemporary Art, USA
  • 1981: Changes: Art in America 1881–1981, Marquette University Wisconsin, USA
  • 1986: Signs and Gestures - Informal Tendencies in Austria, Secession , Vienna, Austria
  • 1989: Land in Sight: Austrian Art in the 20th Century, Mücsarnok Art Gallery, Budapest, Hungary
  • 1995: Two decades of art at BAWAG, BAWAG Foundation, Vienna, Austria
  • 1996: Art from Austria 1896–1996, Art and Exhibition Hall of the FRG, Bonn, Germany
  • 1997: The Secret of Murano, Museum Het Palais, The Hague, Netherlands
  • 1999: I Love Pop, Chiostro del Bramante, Rome, Italy
  • 2001: Reflections - Austrian Avant-garde after 1945, Museum of Modern Art, Wörlen Foundation, Passau, Germany
  • 2002: Artists in Glass, National Crafts Gallery, Dublin, Republic of Ireland
  • 2006: PunkEcho - Echoes of Everywhere, BrotfabrikGalerie, Berlin, Germany
  • 2010: Long Time No See, Brno House of Art, Brno, Czech Republic
  • 2010: POWER UP - Female Pop Art, Kunsthalle Wien, Vienna, AT; Municipal Gallery, Bietigheim-Bissingen, Germany
  • 2010: Seductive Subversion: Woman Pop Artists 1958–1968, Brooklyn Art Museum , New York, USA
  • 2012: Pop Art Design, Louisiana Museum , Louisiana, Denmark
  • 2013: Pop Art Design, Moderna Museet , Stockholm, Sweden
  • 2014: Pop Art Design, Barbican Center , London, United Kingdom
  • 2014: I Multiplied Myself to Feel Myself, Kunstraum Niederoesterreich, Vienna, Austria
  • 2015: Mother of the year, LENTOS Kunstmuseum Linz , Linz, Austria
  • 2015: Pop in Space. We Choose to Go to the Moon, WAVE / Wolverhampton Art Gallery, Wolverhampton, United Kingdom
  • 2015: The World Goes Pop, Tate Modern , London, United Kingdom
  • 2016: Louisiana Classics, from the Collection, Louisiana Museum , Denmark
  • 2016: We Pioneers. Trailblazers of Postwar Modernism, MUMOK , Vienna, Austria
  • 2016: Illumination, New contemporary art at Louisiana, Louisiana Museum , Denmark
  • 2016: Stano Filko, Kiki Kogelnik, Lira Gallery, Rome, Italy
  • 2016: Untitled Body Parts, Simone Subal Gallery, New York, US
  • 2019–2020: The Assembled Human, Museum Folkwang , Essen, Germany

Working in public space

  • 1989: Friday Night , Temple Bar, New York, USA
  • 1989: I have seen the future , Art in Architecture, Goiginger Kaserne, Bleiburg, Austria
  • 1990: Untitled (chameleon) , Temple Bar, New York, USA
  • 1990: Guardian angel , Hirsch Company, Klagenfurt, Austria
  • 1991/92: Jesus is stripped of his clothes , Way of the Cross, St. Kanzian, Stein / Jauntal, Austria
  • 1993: Freyungsbrunnen , Bleiburg, Austria
  • 1994: Doorman, Brunnen , Europa Design Depot Klagenfurt, Austria
  • 1995: Empire State Building , Art in Architecture, Hotel Management School Warmbad, Villach, Austria
  • 1996: The dance of death , Karner, St. Kanzian, Stein / Jauntal, Austria
  • 1997: The song, fountain , Landhausplatz Klagenfurt, Austria


Monographs (selection)

  • Kiki Kogelnik, Kiki in Wien , Vienna, September 1967.
  • Kiki Kogelnik, Do you know why we have 2 breasts? They once were cut apart , Vienna, April 1976.
  • Kiki Kogelnik, Mayfly , Kindberg, 1983.
  • Kiki Kogelnik, Kogelnik Kiki , Ritter Verlag, Klagenfurt, 1989.
  • Kiki Kogelnik, 1234567 , Klagenfurt: Ritter, 1991.
  • Kiki Kogelnik, Kogelnik Kiki , Vienna: Ed. Zetter, 1992.
  • Kiki Kogelnik, Hangings , Vienna: MAK Gallery, 1996.
  • Kiki Kogelnik, Kiki Kogelnik 1935-1997 retrospective , Vienna: Böhlau, 1998.
  • Kiki Kogelnik, It's OK! , Wolfsberg, 2000.
  • Kiki Kogelnik, Kiki Kogelnik , Hollenburg, 2001.
  • Kiki Kogelnik, The painterly and plastic work , by Gabriela Fritz, Hermagoras 2001, ISBN 3-85013-739-2 (contains interviews, catalog raisonné, bibliography, biography)
  • Kiki Kogelnik, Happy Birthday , Kunstverein Kärnten, Klagenfurt, 2005.
  • Kiki Kogelnik, I have seen the future , Cologne: Snoeck, 2012.
  • Kiki Kogelnik, Retrospective Retrospective , Nuremberg: Verlag für Moderne Kunst, 2013, 1st ed.
  • Kiki Kogelnik, Fly Me to the Moon , Modern Art Oxford, 2015.

Press (selection from 1999 to today)

  • 1999: Gabriela Fritz, Women`s Lib, Kiki Kogelniks Frauenbilder, Parnass, special issue Artists, 1999, pp. 60-66.
  • 2012: Hajo Schiff, WG from distant pop times , TAZ, November 2, 2012.
  • 2012: Anne Doran, Kiki Kogelnik , Art in America, December 12, 2012.
  • 2013: Anne Katrin Fessler, punk cosmonaut kisses the bone man , the Standard, July 15, 2013.
  • 2014: Alicia Reuter, Space is the Place , Sleek, Summer 2014, pp. 228
  • 2014: Eva Scharrer, Body as Figure , Spike, no 41, pp. 194-195.
  • 2015: Alex Kitnick, Kiki Kogelnik , Artforum, 01/2015, pp. 213-214.
  • 2015: Tim Adams, Josh Kline: Freedom; Kiki Kogelnik. Fly Me to the Moon review - an unnerving fantasy world and off-the-peg identities , The Guardian, August 23, 2015.
  • 2015: Laura Castellis, Review of Kiki Kogelnik: Fly Me to the Moon at Modern Art Oxford , Aesthetica Magazine, October 27, 2015.
  • 2016: Elsa R. Linn, Critic's Guide: Berlin , Frieze, February 29, 2016.
  • 2016: Mariuccia Casadio, KK´S POP , Vogue Italia, May 2016, n. 789, pp. 178.

Films about Kogelnik

  • 1975: Kiki Kogelnik - A woman painter, ORF, 12 min.
  • 1994: Kiki Kogelnik - scissors instead of brush, ORF, 30 min.
  • 2010: Kiki Kosmos - The Art of Kiki Kogelnik , ORF, 44 min.

Web links

Commons : Kiki Kogelnik  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Kiki Kogelnik in the Krems art gallery. Retrieved July 13, 2013 .
  2. ^ Hans-Peter Wipplinger: Kiki Kogelnik, Retrospective Retrospective . Prolog. 1st edition. Verlag für Moderne Kunst, Nuremberg 2013, ISBN 978-3-901261-52-7 , p. 6 .
  3. Arnulf Rohsmann: Kiki Kogelnik monograph . The abstract pictures 1959-1961. Ritter Verlag, Klagenfurt 1989, ISBN 3-85415-075-X , p. 9 .
  4. Karin Dornbach: Kiki Kogelnik, Happy Birthday . Art comes from the artificial. Ed .: Art Association Carinthia. Klagenfurt 2005, p. 8 .
  5. Arnulf Rohsmann: Kiki Kogelnik monograph . The abstract pictures 1959-1961. Ritter Verlag, Klagenfurt 1989, ISBN 3-85415-075-X .
  6. ^ Kiki Kogelnik: I have seen the future . Ed .: Florian Waldvogel. Snoeck Verlag, Cologne 2012, ISBN 978-3-86442-024-5 , p. 211 .
  7. Michael Lüthy, The consumer good in the art world. Shopping: Exhibition catalog, Schirn Kunsthalle, Frankfurt 2002
  8. Arnulf Rohsmann: Kiki Kogelnik monograph . Pop-Related Paintings 1963-1970. Ritter Verlag, Klagenfurt 1989, ISBN 3-85415-075-X , p. 23-24 .
  9. Kiki Kogelnik in the Krems art gallery. Retrieved July 13, 2013 .
  10. Arnulf Rohsmann: Kiki Kogelnik monograph . Pop-Related Paintings 1963-1970. Ritter Verlag, Klagenfurt 1989, ISBN 3-85415-075-X , p. 26-28 .
  11. Arnulf Rohsmann: Kiki Kogelnik monograph . Pop-Related Paintings 1963-1970. Ritter Verlag, Klagenfurt 1989, ISBN 3-85415-075-X , p. 24 .
  12. Arnulf Rohsmann: Kiki Kogelnik monograph . Hangings 1967-1971. Ritter Verlag, Klagenfurt 1989, ISBN 3-85415-075-X , p. 47-48 .
  13. Burkhart Schmidt: Kiki Kogelnik retrospective 1935-1997 . Masquerade: Between Pop Art and the essential surface. Boehlau, Vienna 1998, ISBN 3-205-98886-8 , p. 18-22 .
  14. Arnulf Rohsmann: Kiki Kogelnik monograph . Women's Lib images. Ritter Verlag, Klagenfurt 1989, ISBN 3-85415-075-X , p. 61-70 .
  15. Kiki Kogelnik and the Glass Heads. Retrieved July 23, 2013 .
  16. Where Carinthia's artists gently rest. In: Kleine Zeitung from November 1, 2013 ( Memento from November 13, 2013 in the Internet Archive ). Retrieved April 25, 2014.
  17. Kogelnik sculpture reappeared, February 29, 2020, accessed March 1, 2020.
  18. Kiki Kogelnik. Les cyborgs ne sont pas respectueuses, Musée des beaux-arts, La Chaux-de-Fonds, 2020
  19. The Mounted Man, Museum Folkwang, Essen, 2019-2020
  20. ↑ Flat share from distant pop times. Retrieved November 2, 2012 .
  21. Kiki Kogelnik. Retrieved December 14, 2012 .
  22. Punk cosmonaut kisses the bone man. Retrieved July 14, 2013 .
  23. ^ Josh Kline: Freedom; Kiki Kogelnik. Fly Me to the Moon review - an unnerving fantasy world and off-the-peg identities. Retrieved August 23, 2015 .
  24. Review of Kiki Kogelnik: Fly Me to the Moon at Modern Art Oxford. Retrieved October 27, 2015 .
  25. ^ Cooper Jacoby, Tobias Kaspar, Kiki Kogelnik and more: the best current shows in Berlin. Retrieved February 29, 2016 .