Rudi Molacek

Rose, 1999

In his work, Molacek treats the rose blossom in a most superior way; these aluminium sculptures appear in all sorts of colours and are placed in public space, in parks and gardens. The present black Rose unfolds its aura in an interplay with nature in the form of a gigantic ground sculpture. The motif of the rose was derived from the world of technical media and is transferred to the three-dimensionality of sculpture. Molacek turns the open rose blossom into a monumental emblem not only in order to effectively alienate its aesthetic attraction by choosing material and supra-dimensionality, but also to highlight it.


Photography used to be the basic medium for Rudi Molacek’s artistic creation. In 1984 he turned to painting and used his experience as a photographer in interpreting the image as a technical system, and also in transferring it to the panel. He started to experiment with carrier materials and techniques, contrasting oil painting with computer painting or serigraphy.


He submits the classic motif of the flower – mainly the rose – to various aesthetical procedures. For him, the rose is the symbol of popular culture par excellence: a symbol of democratisation, covering a wide emotional range. Thus with plastic tulips in a serial arrangement, he composes a flowerbed or develops floral carpets, tablecloths or glass tables using schematic rose serigraphy. 

The rose blossom receives an elitist treatment in his alloy sculptures, which come in all colours – pink, yellow, green, blue, black, white etc. – and are placed in the public space, in parks and gardens. The black rose is located in the Skulpturenpark, where she unfolds her aura against nature in the form of a gigantic ground sculpture.


The motif of the rose was derived from the world of technical media and will be transferred to the three-dimensional character of a sculpture, thus again finding her place in nature. Molacek does not perceive himself as a flower painter or landscape designer. His points of reference are the New York scene pop artists stretching from Andy Warhol, to Jasper Johns and Claes Oldenburg, whose superlative explicitness in their works gave otherwise negligible objects an icon-like status.


Thus Molacek also conventionalises the open rose blossom as a monumental emblem, in order to alienate but also to effectively highlight its aesthetical attraction in the material and supra-dimensionality.

Author: Christa Steinle 
Plan & Overview: Position 35
Owner: [Austrian Sculpture Park, Universalmuseum Joanneum]
Biography: Rudi Molacek 

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