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How Gugging Has Influenced Fashion and Pop Culture

How Gugging Has Influenced Fashion and Pop Culture


At the gugging museum in Klosterneuburg (Tulln district) you can visit a new special exhibition from Thursday. It shows how music, literature, fashion, and photography have been influenced by Gugging artists.

With the publication of Schizophrenia and Art (1965) by Leo Navratil, a psychiatrist and department head at what was then the Gugging State Psychiatric Clinic, the art world began to take notice of manipulation artists. For example, David Bowie and Brian Eno visited the House of Artists in 1994, where they met August Walla, Oswald Chertner, Johann Garber and others.

Photographer Christine DeGrancy captured the event, and her photos are now on display for the first time at the spot where they were taken. David Bowie did not have the slightest form of airiness and grace, de Grancie says. “The cool thing was how he approached this place. Of course, we were also interested in the fact that he was interested in Art brut. There was something lurking in his eyesight.”

“A magical place for artists”

“Gugging has been a magical place for artists since the ’60s,” explains Nina Ansperger. “Bite Inspires! von Bowie bis Roth” is her first show as the new Art and Science Director.

“Austrian writer Gerhard Roth immortalized the Gugging artists in both his literary and pictorial works. Arnulf Rainer, Peter Bongratz and Johann Rausch also wanted to be close to the Guggingers. Scottish fashion designer Christopher Kane was inspired by the motifs of Heinrich Reisenbauer and Johann Couric,” says Ansberger.

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The museum must become a place of inclusion and discourse

All of this is clearly displayed in the exhibition, showing that inspiration was sometimes mutual. A catalog has been published for the exhibition, containing numerous illustrations and text contributions in 232 pages, including Ansperger, Pongratz, Rausch, and Kane.

Photo series with 6 photos

As Johann Fellacher’s successor, Ansberger – who has been in office since January 1 – wants to expand the museum’s reach as a place for inclusion, sharing and open discourse. She also wants to focus more on female artists. The new special exhibition demonstrates Ansperger’s intention to act as a medium without compromising the quality of the works presented. “Gnaws inspire.! von bowie bis roth” can be seen through September 24th.