Finger and toe nails always grow the same, no matter how unsuccessful or successful our lives are at the moment, no matter how productive or unproductive – it reminds us that life means metabolism. This stoic element counters the notion of growth – e.g., economic growth – as progress.
The monumentality of the North Railroad Toe transposes this context into the public sphere: The nail grows unaffected by world events, the fortunes and misfortunes, success or failure of the community. The growth reflects the sheer passing of time in its merciless linearity.
An information board at the object indicates that anyone can edit the nail plate with an ordinary household saw and/or rasp.
Once you have taken responsibility for the nail, for whatever reason, you are under pressure to do so. For just as growth offers the chance for even the worst damage to be corrected, this status quo must always be re-established.
During the mediation session, visitors will be introduced to the project. The condition and growth of the nail as well as possible interactions of the residents will be put in relation to developments in the surrounding urban space. Questions about the relationship between individual and community as well as the role of art in public space will be discussed with the audience.
A project by Leopold Kessler sponsored by KÖR Kunst im öffentlichen Raum Wien and Stadt Wien.
Leopold Kessler (b. 1976, lives and works in Vienna) studied sculpture in Munich and Vienna, where he graduated in 2004. His work has been shown in national and international solo exhibitions – including Malmo Konsthall, Bunkier Sztuki in Krakow and Secession in Vienna, as well as in group exhibitions e.g. at the Broad Art Museum of Michigan State University, Palais de Tokyo and de Appel, Amsterdam. He was also a participant in the 2011 Singapore Biennale, the 10th Lyon Biennale and Manifesta 5 in San Sebastian.
The Nordbahn-toe – Workshop with LEOPOLD KESSLER
19 Nov 2022/15:00-16:30H
Rudolf-Bednar-Park, Krakauer Straße 17, 1020 Wien, Österreich
© Leopold Kessler