WYA Austria meets Kunstglaube

It was an experience of different cast. KUNSTGLAUBE means “Artfaith” in English translation. But what did it really mean? At an event last night, we weren’t really sure on what it literally meant. Did it mean the art of faith of the faith in Art. I together with the members of the WYA Austria Chapter got the answers from our questions after an opportunity to meet the founder and curator of KUNSTGLAUBE.

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KUNSTGLAUBE is an organisation that installs non-religious contemporary art in sacred places.

But what does it truly mean and what does it have to do with the human person?

It was the experience of learning to see. To see art outside the conventional way, differently of how we are used to see in museums, exhibitions and churches. 

“What is the difference between traditional, modern and contemporary art?” David Rasters, the curator of the KUNSTGLAUBE organisation asked our group at the beginning of our discussion. 

After a comprehensive but enlightening introduction he explained that people should get the experience of the transforming power of art. What it transmits is not the common feeling visitors face when they go to the museum to see Rubens’ full-sized paintings or the vivid sculptures of Canova. Moreover, they get part of the artwork itself. The visitor infront of the contemporary artwork is to be revealed as its subject. They should be stirred up to reflect and learn about the deep fragility of human being – about themselves, their wounds and vulnerabilities. Thus human turns to being centered. In this context we understood that throughout the exhibition the works would never be “explained” to the viewer because this would undermine the potential for the experience to be uniquely meaningful to each individual. Again, different to what we expect in museums. 

On that special evening, our group also had the opportunity to exchange thoughts and discuss them with David. The experience placed initial unknowing and sceptic thoughts into a different light of how to see things.

The organisation already exhibited in one of the greatest historical churches of Vienna and they also have upcoming exhibits in Austria and even abroad. We would like to thank David and his team for welcoming us and for the new found learnings and thoughts that our group gained in seeing beauty and art in our community.

Written by Anna Maria Honeck member of the Austrian Chapter of World Youth Alliance