Martin Gostner

1957 (Innsbruck), lives and works in Düsseldorf and Innsbruck

Within the artistic oeuvre of Martin Gostner, which includes sculptural approaches as well as the exploration of various forms of language and communication, the examination of history and memory has been a central focus since 1987. His interest in the history of things is by no means oblivious to the present, but focuses on the traces that the recent past has left in the world - through both brief traumatic events and long-lasting developments. Gostner's works speak in their own specific way of the inner necessity to illuminate these traces, which have left their mark on the individual and the collective memory.

Unlike the historical sciences, however, Gostner does not work on a history of facts, which aims to unravel and explain the course of the past by means of chains of events. With his approach, he rather seems to be reacting to the structure of the memory’s terrain – as a quasi immeasurable pool of personal and social memories, which appear chaotic and fragmented in their superimposition, but which, from a neuroscientific point of view, are organised in the memory of the individual in multipartite networks around particularly imprinted nodes, and which as such are always somehow present, but often buried. [...]

Extract from: Jürgen Tabor, Erkerkultur und Knotenpunkte der Geschichte. On the work of Martin Gostner, 2014. (Translated by Austrian Sculpture Park)