Austrian-born artist Alois Kronschlaeger creates work that exists at the intersection of art and architecture. He is interested in environment and light, and in exploring time and space via geometry. Often referring to his works as “architectural interventions,” Kronschlaeger is fascinated by the way viewers rearrange themselves within a space occupied by one of his interventions.
At times Kronschlaeger’s work feels surreal, as with Habitat, a large-scale installation in the Mammal Hall of the former Grand Rapids Public Museum. For Site:Lab 2012 Kronschlaeger created what he called “a very awkward imagery of juxtaposition.” He took the existing landscape of 27 habitat dioramas built in the mid-20th century and incorporated contemporary architectural interventions. The impact of the combination of the organic and the geometric was strange and disorienting. A viewer wonders about what is real and unreal, an inquiry that requires the him to further analyze his experience.
At other times Kronschlaeger’s work feels like pure science fiction, as with Spire, the massive installation he did for Site:Lab in 2011. For this work Kronschlaeger’s installation occupied three floors of an abandoned commercial building in downtown Grand Rapids. The work took over six weeks to create and the finished project was a grand demonstration of Kronschlaeger’s interest in environment, light and the ways new materials can revive and transform a space.
Kronschlaeger furthers his inquiries in his less dramatic works as well, such as his skylights, wall pieces and smaller sculptures, which I am particularly drawn to. This fall he will finish a large work at MOCA Tuscon (see video below), and will then head to Beijing where he will create another site-specific structure.