Yves Netzhammer was born in 1970 in Schaffhausen and studied Visual Design at the “Zurich College of Art and Design”. Since 1997 he has been working on the production of videos, installations, 3D animations, drawings and other objects by using the digital medium in an evocative, personal and poetic way. The work of the Swiss artist is in fact the result of a recombination of apparently contradictory elements , such as melody and cacophony, life and death, which lead us to the dark side of existence. Through the formal purity of the line, the body acquires its own primary language.
The protagonist of its 3D animation is in fact almost always an a-sexual manikin, a figure which seems to have been generated by a metaphysical and aseptic world, a humanoid simulacrum through which the artist tries to investigate the existing relationship and the connections between the human dimension, the world of objects and the animal and plant environment. The painted scenario ranges from microscopic scales to gigantic sizes and aims at deeply engaging our senses, to the point of creating a personal perception of movement. Within his environment, the artist designs a space in which video, sculpture and sound installations created by Bernd Schurer seem to be talking to each other. Within these eclectic and versatile microcosms, perception and narrative are broken down and multiplied by the projection of multimedia creations in a maze of mirrors.
Therefore, the character/manikin is unable to find its proper dimension, dragged in random combinations which confer an anti-narrative progression to the plot. The objects and backgrounds within the multimedia creations are reduced to their abstract and semiotic features, thus becoming the tool that any viewer can use to start his own imaginative reconstruction. Nietzhammer wants his works to be a total physical experience, a separate material universe through which it is possible to approach the outside world.
The analysis relates to natural phenomena not on the basis of a purely theoretical and conceptual vision, but rather undertaking a study of the image in its complexity as being a concrete phenomenon in contact with our senses. The artist successufully managed to create, through a timeless and spaceless visual language, mental landscapes which effectively approach our world.
He has exhibited his works at the Helmhaus of Zurich (2003), at the Kunsthalle in Bremen (2005), at the Rietberg Museum in Zurich (2006), at the Karlskirche in Kassel (support program of Documenta 12 in 2007), in San Francisco at the SFMOMA (2008), at the Liverpool Biennial (2010), at the Kunstmuseum in Bern (2011), at the Minsheng Art Museum in Shanghai (2012) and in the Gallery K11 in Shanghai, China (2013). In Italy he has represented Switzerland at the Venice Biennale (2007) and has participated in group exhibitions, such as the one in the Palazzo Strozzi , “Strozzina “, Florence, (2008) or “Click or Clash” at the Galleria Bianconi in Milan (2012).
PERIPHERIES OF BODIES
This digital animation is part of a trilogy called “Triptychon “, which began in 2011 with “Dialogical Abrasion” and ended in 2013 with “Formal Conscience”. In this work, presented for the first time in the Galleria Bianconi in Milan in 2012, the artist attempts to analyze the possible interactions between man and his environment. The characters/ manikins are shown to us as human beings moving through rooms in which different levels of reality are mixed and reorganized. Poetic moments of contemplation are combined with scenarios of nightmares and loneliness, in which any attempt to communicate / meet with other individuals is made impossible. The artist’s intention is to simultaneously catapult the viewer in spaces and pictorial worlds, where the internal logic of association clashes with the patterns of conventional narrative. The video is linked to the installation of silhouettes of objects seen as icons of our existance, known shapes representing the life of the individual and that of the community.
ADDRESSES OF IMPOSSIBLE PLACES
(Adressen unmöglicher Orte)
Presented for the first time at Kunsthalle in Winterthur, this work is an animated video which is the core of the whole Opera. However, the sculptures and the installations manage to develop certain aspects of the video itself and re-contextualize them. As a matter of fact, they develop the capacity to engage a direct dialogue with people, or else they transform themselves giving shape to human fears and desires. The art object, therefore, ‘comes out’ from the work to create a surreal environment in which a deformed daily-space baffles the viewer. Just like the bodies of the characters are continually defaced and disassembled, as if they were puppets, also the furniture in the room undergoes a force that undermines its initial state. Once again Netzhammer deals with the basic themes of human existence, focusing on the cruel – at times perverse – aspects which affect the relationship with the world around us.
Special thanks to the Swiss Consulate in Venice