Artwork of the month September

Kurt Sigrist, Phantheatron, 1992/93

Kurt Sigrist

*1943 in Sachseln, Switzerland

Phantheatron, 1992/93

Corten steel

195 × 191 × 195 cm

A massive cube of rusty steel is divided vertically into two halves, one of which opens up to form a high passage, while the other rises in front of the beholder with closed faces. When viewed from a remote, slightly elevated vantage point, we see that the cube consists of two identical constellations which create two completely different spaces simply because they are aligned at 90 degrees to each other. While one body directs the eye to a surrounding space which exists in sharp outline, the other, denying us almost all views of the inside, presents itself completely for outward viewing; and while the passage incorporates the horizontal, human motion of walking, the inaccessible, vertical shaft takes the form of an immovable joint between the earth and the sky.

As such, Phantheatron exhibits that marriage of polar opposites such as interior and exterior, verticality and horizontality, openness and closedness which are also characteristic of one of Sigrist's main works: the iron sculpture Zeitraum (installed at a service area on the north-south A2 motorway in the Canton of Uri) treats the house as a theme of protection and security, connecting with openness on all sides – a timeless inner-Swiss reference to home with the transience of travelling.

Along with the steel sculpture Phantheatron, the Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein collection also features a related bronze model from 1992. The Sculpture Triennial of Bex in 1993 was an occasion to transfer the piece into a large format, and indeed the title makes reference to the overarching theme of theatre at that show ("Mise en scène"). The work has found its nal installation site in the sculpture park of the Stein-Egerta house in Schaan.

Franziska Hilbe

<b>Kurt Sigrist, Phantheatron, 1992/93</b>
Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein highlights a work from the permanent collection each month throughout the year. Works from the collection of the Hilti Art Foundation are also included in this series on a regular basis.