Herbert Pföstl - “He became frightened of flowers because they grew so slowly that he couldn’t tell what they planned to do.”

sl4.jpg
Herbert Pföstl,
Schrift-Landschaften, Epidote Press, 2015.
http://herbertpfostl.com
https://twitter.com/herbert_pfostl?lang=en
http://papergraveyard.blogspot.hr/
http://blindpony.blogspot.hr


This artist's edition includes prints of Herbert Pföstl’s nine original Schrift-Landschaften drawings, along with a foreword written by filmmaker David Gatten, titled “Navigation Charts, Compass Points & Ledger Lines: Herbert Pföstl’s Schrift-Landschaften as Philosophical Instruments.” The drawings are composed of a single text-fragment, written in Pföstl’s distinctly small script, and inscribed upon a page from a nautical traverse table. One is reminded of the particularities of calligraphic expression and the meditative processes required to create needlework samplers, chronological tables, weather diaries, or even telegraphic code. Pföstl’s Schrift-Landschaften, however, come from a deep reading of and reliance upon literature; these lines are fragments from books gathered over many years and transformed into a landscape of incantations for the artist. What at first appears a wilderness of words on paper soon resolves into a garland of vows concealed within the text. Gatten’s foreword is both a response to Pföstl’s Schrift-Landschaften as well as a meditation on his abiding interest in the liminal space which often exists between drawing and writing — a place masterfully explored and surveyed in his astonishing films. Pföstl writes of the Schrift-Landschaften: “As incantation in repetition, these landscapes of script are walks in writing on fields of paper. Resurrected fragments, summoned as vows: exercises to gain time.”



Our first Artist’s Edition includes prints of Herbert Pföstl’s nine original Schrift-Landschaften drawings, along with a foreword written by filmmaker David Gatten, titled “Navigation Charts, Compass Points & Ledger Lines: Herbert Pföstl’s Schrift-Landschaften as Philosophical Instruments.” The drawings are composed of a single text-fragment, written in Pföstl’s distinctly small script, and inscribed upon a page from a nautical traverse table. One is reminded of the particularities of calligraphic expression and the meditative processes required to create needlework samplers, chronological tables, weather diaries, or even telegraphic code. Pföstl’s Schrift-Landschaften, however, come from a deep reading of and reliance upon literature; these lines are fragments from books gathered over many years and transformed into a landscape of incantations for the artist. What at first appears a wilderness of words on paper soon resolves into a garland of vows concealed within the text. Gatten’s foreword is both a response to Pföstl’s Schrift-Landschaften as well as a meditation on his abiding interest in the liminal space which often exists between drawing and writing — a place masterfully explored and surveyed in his astonishing films. Pföstl writes of the Schrift-Landschaften: “As incantation in repetition, these landscapes of script are walks in writing on fields of paper. Resurrected fragments, summoned as vows: exercises to gain time.” 
The Standard Edition of two hundred copies will include color offset prints of the nine Schrift-Landschaften drawings created by Herbert Pföstl in 2015, as well as a letterpress printed leaflet of David Gatten’s foreword. Everything will be housed in a handmade enclosure with letterpress printing. All printing by Jon Beacham at The Brother in Elysium
The Special Edition of nine signed and numbered copies will include everything in the Standard Edition plus one original Schrift-Landschaften drawing created by Pföstl in 2016 especially for this publication. 
Each drawing in the Special Edition is composed of one of the following nine lines: 
we can tell whether we are happy by the sound of the wind
a consolation even to plants and animals
birds and stars and bells and snowflakes
all we wish for is to be forgotten

and whatever is destroyed is regretted
to do everything possible for that which does not exist
the invisible things will give me strength

and the skies passed on as over nature

to the ships that are no more










Herbert Pföstl, Light Issued Against Ruin, The Brother in Elysium, 2014.


A book of works on paper made after my departure from NY in 2012-2013. Includes a foreword by Jon Beacham, and an artist statement.


Herbert Pfostl’s work is ripe with a distinct stoicism that, in the words of his friend (and author of the publication’s Forward) Jon Beacham, represents a sensation beyond nostalgia: “There is no nostalgia here, only an appreciation for antiquity.” Bound dutifully in a heather-gray jacket with embossed type features, Light Issued Against Ruin gestures at the weathered objects, those tinted with time, that produce gestures to compete with lighter and more immediate visuals that exist contemporaneously.
Pfostl’s rich visualizations are paired with single lines or words of poetic prose; together, these elements represent a body of work that revels in a deep quietude, far from (but still connected to) the image-saturation and textual associations that dominate visual culture on a larger scale.





To Die No More, Ed. by Herbert Pföstl and Kristofor Minta,

Blind Pony Books, 2012. 


An artist's book on the marvelous embroideries of death, collected and edited in 170 text fragments - from Aries to Wittgenstein - by Herbert Pföstl and Kristofor Minta.


Alcoholism, decay, demons, disappearance, disease, crows, ghosts, loss, maggots, nothingness, orphans, silence, the void and worms are some of the topics offered in this singular artist's book. Designed to pay homage to the fairytale forest of death with parables and fragments from sources both known and long-forgotten, this riveting compendium of dark quotations, illustrated by Herbert Pfostl and James Walsh, borrows from such illustrious figures as Samuel Beckett, Herman Melville, Mozart, James Joyce, Ludwig Wittgenstein, William Shakespeare, Adolf Loos, Jorge Luis Borges, Emily Dickinson, Gustav Mahler, Friedrich Nietzsche, William Butler Yeats, Goethe, Antoine de Saint-Exupery, Homer, Francis Bacon, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Joseph Conrad, W.G. Sebald, August Strindberg, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Rainer Maria Rilke, William Blake, Rudyard Kipling and Walter Benjamin.








Herbert Pfostl is an artist we’d like to know more about.
charms
His work combines found images and text with figural notions of animals and herbs, half-finished rubbings, and archetypal blots and smudges.
Pfostl’s drawings and mixed-media works invoke a library dear to hilobrow–Blake and Dickinson, Benjamin and Bataille. But Pfostl reads them with stained fingers. Like the great Czech animator Jan Svankmajer, Pfostl makes highbrow art with dirty fingers.
murder
Images like these may be found at Pfostl’s blog, where they are accompanied with the quotations that inspire and animate them. Pfostl’s book To Die No More is a compendium of quotations and images in the same vein.
Matthew Battles
http://hilobrow.com/2009/03/20/the-art-of-abject-dreaming-herbert-pfostl-and-roberto-kusterle/


image
Herbert Pfostl was born in Graz, Austria in 1968. He worked at the New Museum in New York City, where he was a curator and book buyer for the New Museum Book Store.
He has described himself as an artist of a “paper graveyard” in which the viewer may discover:
“drawings and paintings of animals and saints and black robbers in their forests with white stags and drowned sailors in their ships at the bottom of the oceans and many of the beautiful dead. I made them for you – so come back – spend time.”
As an artist enamored of old books and antiquated paper, Pfostl’s work immediately resonated with my own sensibilities. His art combines found images and text with figural notions of animals and herbs, half-finished rubbings, and archetypal blots and smudges. These drawings and mixed-media works invoke a library dear to hilobrow–Blake and Dickinson, Benjamin and Bataille. But Pfostl reads them with stained fingers. Like the great Czech animator Jan Svankmajer, Pfostl makes highbrow art with dirty fingers.
Small paintings as parables of plants and animals and old stories of black robbers and white stags. Fragments on death like mirrors from a black sleep in the forests of fairy tales. All stories from the dust of the dead in fragments and footnotes like melodies of heartbreak and north and night and exploration – breakdowns. About saints with no promise of heaven and lost sailors forgotten and the terribly lonely bears. The unknown, the ugly – and the odd. Collected grand mistakes, noble errors from many sources. Sinking signals – conscious or not – sonatas and last letters and great insults. The impossible tears in landscapes of ocean or stranded whales. A going far back to coals and cruelties and sobbing like songs in whiskey and blood. Of soldiers’ last letters and all seven seas. With pirates and wars and prayers in holes in the ground. Of fallen women and orphaned children and drowned slaves and burned saints.
Alcoholism, decay, demons, disappearance, disease, crows, ghosts, loss, maggots, nothingness, orphans, silence, the void and worms are some of the topics offered in this singular artist’s work. Designed to pay homage to the fairytale forest of death with parables and fragments from sources both known and long-forgotten Pfostl builds upon such illustrious figures as Samuel Beckett, Herman Melville, Mozart, James Joyce, Ludwig Wittgenstein, William Shakespeare, Adolf Loos, Jorge Luis Borges, Emily Dickinson, Gustav Mahler, Friedrich Nietzsche, William Butler Yeats, Goethe, Antoine de Saint-Exupery, Homer, Francis Bacon, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Joseph Conrad, W.G. Sebald, August Strindberg, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Rainer Maria Rilke, William Blake, Rudyard Kipling and Walter Benjamin.
“He became frightened of flowers because they grew so slowly that he couldn’t tell what they planned to do.”
These wine-leaf-brown prose fragments need no page numbering, these chance discoveries connect one’s own feelings to those of kindred spirits and now fill the room, a place of chamotte-golden daylight, they vibrate and swing, are highly vivacious attractors of thought, grains of salt to garland the sting of death, nourishing light set against the dark premonition of a final end to the godless Western world and its consuming despair.
They can be found in a sensuous treasure chest of similar dimensions, weight, and texture as a smallish cigar-case, one that might hold five Havanas. A deliberate piece of art, a vignette of death, sways in relief at the cover’s middle: the stylized figure of a doomed little ship on calm seas, emblem and symbol of the human soul equipped for certain death.
Its cross is proud and questioning simultaneously- though ever dependent on a deeper center, from which its perpendicularity is derived and its echo resounds.
From its pale blue frame, it partakes in the triumph of the already-dead: ’ Nevermore will we die.

Pfostl’s work… stained as with spilled coffee and tea and smudged with sooty, bituminous black ink… speaks of dark forebodings, shadows, violence and tenderness… and death.
And always beauty.
A dark beauty.
And poetry.
Pfostl’s works speaks to me of the magical theaters of Joseph Cornell, the alchemical musings of Anselm Kiefer, the medieval scriptorium, the dark music of Nathaniel Hawthorne, Edgar Allan Poe, Charles Baudelaire, and Charles Simic; Goya's Los Caprichos, the “doodles” of Dubuffet and Paul Klee, crude carvings of Romanesque sculptors and rude paintings of Bill Traylor, the illegible scrawls of small children, pornographic graffiti in ancient tombs, and the prehistoric paintings of Lascaux.
http://stlukesguild.tumblr.com/post/79102621960/contemporary-artist-herbert-pfostl


On My Sanctuary Space by Herbert Pfostl

In the latter half of the 1980s I lived in Vienna and was sustained by Buchhandlung Posch, a small bookstore stacked floor to ceiling with miracles and still open today on the Lerchenfelder Straße in the 7th district. It was my first sanctuary site—if you discount the fields and forest of my childhood, where I would hide after or instead of school. There never seemed much room for people in the shop, so crowded with numberless books it was, but there I discovered for myself the marvelously intemperate writings of “the ungrateful beggar” Léon Bloy, Céline and Lautréamont, and the darkly consoling stories of Robert Walser or Marcel Schwob.
To Herrn Dr. Posch, the white-haired owner of the bookshop, an untiring advocate of Dada and Surrealist literature and devotee of culinary herbs and Bakunin, I would bring my money from the sales of small works. Posch was, in fact, one of the first collectors of my early drawings and I often spent the money he gave me on the books he sold in his shop. Collected works by Antonin Artaud (whose hallucinatory and hieroglyphic drawings devastated me) and Georges Bataille, both published in handsome German editions by Matthes & Seitz, then and now the principal publisher for resurrected or invented secret influences, solitary visionaries, and radical shimmers. Books with shadows in them, but so much light breaking through. Entire landscapes of texts shelved as receptacles of a spirit now seemingly gone out of this world. Things carried home to be sheltered by and shattered. After I left Vienna for New York, I would often return to Buchhandlung Posch and find wonders such as the writings of Hans Henny Jahnn, Jean Paul, and Jürgen von der Wense, which continue to cut a clearing through me.
Profound events, formative like sacred childhood things.. My early work was made of these. But it took time for me to parcel out how to sort and direct what occupied me. We are what we read and become what we see. What’s buried and unburied when we are children, we hold up for the remainder of our lives, as banners for more light. “Evidence of things unseen” made to appear.
The place for such appearance is the studio. The sanctuary space: a bower built to arrange the soul with totems, spells, and cadences. To perform remedies, discourage disaster. For knowing, and for carrying on. I moved my studio many times: from Vienna to New York, within New York, and away from there after more than twenty years to a place below a sky that’s filled with birds and silent nights.
There is a certain tone in the things that matter, an architecture of delayed light or slow sounds from long ago. Fragments for the after-silence, the sorting of a garden. Things in their essence. Spiritual forms, an invisible geometry of objects that gives strength to us through music. In my studio I work to the sounds of Gurdjieff, Schubert, Feldman, and the remote and raw American music of the 1920s and 1930s. Sacred singers of two-minute dramas in hymns or groans about the strangeness in this world. Whispered petitions to show us the way or to destroy us completely. Every word a last word. Every sound a revenant. Its history a mountain-deep ocean, with too many names to tally. I have always been addicted to it.
The walls of my studio are emptier now than in the past: only a Paradiso chart from Dante’s Divina Commedia, the image of a ruin, and a broken daguerreotype, all gifted to me by friends. They are kept bare for my own small works of rescue-emblems, broken lines, and Hauchkreis circles. Very small landscapes and black squares like small blind windows. They remain awhile then are replaced by others. Standing heavy against the wall is the old black-green desk, covered with excavated things, summoned for the tone necessary to carry on, a field to lean the forehead over. With broken toys and animals of worn wood or white with silver, vanished histories spread across and placed as in my early works. A rickety chair sits in front of the desk. Scrapbooks are stacked close by for mining. I have space to stand up and reach into piles and walls of books on art and other subjects that aid my work and serve as companions. Stacks of old Dover books on the histories of sailors, soldiers, and fanatics, of their Scrambles Amongst the Alps, in Africa and the polar regions. Early captivity and conversion narratives, tales of exploration breakdowns and ships sunk by whales. Fehrenbach’s enlightening and terrifying Comanches: The Destruction of a People and John Sepich’s Notes on Blood Meridian. Volumes on mesmerism, Lost Lands and Sunken Cities, and primitive European art. Books on archetypal patterns, On Growth and Form, and Ritual Animal Disguise. Of Icelandic sagas, the Gilgamesh epic, and Hans Prinzhorn’s Artistry of the Mentally Ill. John Ruskin’s life and writings and works by Sir Thomas Browne. Charles Burchfield’s journals, The Visions of Arnold Schönberg, and Die unendliche Heilung of Aby Warburg. August Strindberg’s Inferno and his occult experiments with photography. Monographs on the isolated, inimitable works of Hercules Segers, M. K. Čurlionis, and C. F. Hill. A monumental book on Leonardo da Vinci, a dear relic of my childhood, which once belonged to my father. And books on Russian and Byzantine icons, on Giotto, Piero della Francesca, and Caspar David Friedrich—all, like the films of Robert Bresson, too magnificent for words.
The charity of things. This is what constitutes my world, as harbor and as shelter, together with my love, the friendship of a few rare people, and this library of the departed. For me it is enough. That we may know how to care: everything beautiful is broken or anonymous. 
https://www.maharam.com/stories/pfostl_on-my-sanctuary-space


I have written elsewhere about my studio as sanctuary space. It is my place about all places and all times—a sort of garden arranged with totems. Outside is nature (the leaves, animals (mostly birds), the light from the sky). Inside are slow sounds—often from the beginnings of recording history—mono spells and cadences. They set the tone and give the soul structure while I am working. It is here that I sit with my drawings and small paintings, at an old green table, which is strewn with excavated things—simple stones, some twigs, and black dust. Many little pieces of sandpaper and burnt matches. A rickety chair and scrapbooks beside it—for mining. Piles and walls of books—from old dover editions on the histories of sailors, soldiers, and fanatics, to volumes about occult experiments, exploration breakdowns, stories of vanished things and dreams. One can find books on Russian and Byzantine icons, primitive arts (both European and non-European), the old masters, the insane, the anonymous, and the forgotten. Tomes on myth and meanings, on patterns and archetypes. Entire landscapes of sacred things in monographs on the isolated and inimitable works of Hercules Segers, M. K. Čurlionis, and C. F. Hill. On the walls: a paradise chart from Dante’s Divine Comedy, a friend’s image of a ruin, a broken daguerreotype. A continuous coming and going of new works—mostly landscape fragments these days. Silver lakes, white plants, inscriptions, traces. Slowly crafted sinking signs. The eclipse. I have moved my studio many times: from Vienna to New York, within the boroughs of New York, and away from there after more than twenty years to a more silent place with fewer people and more sky.
https://mailchi.mp/ea9f9dd72acb/herbert-pfstl-is-in-wild-air




All Sorts of Remedies




Comments

  1. Want To Boost Your ClickBank Banner Commissions And Traffic?

    Bannerizer made it easy for you to promote ClickBank products with banners, simply go to Bannerizer, and grab the banner codes for your chosen ClickBank products or use the Universal ClickBank Banner Rotator Tool to promote all of the ClickBank products.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

László Krasznahorkai - A torrent of hypnotic, lyrical prose, Krasznahorkai's novel explores the process of seeing and representation, tackling notions of the sublime and the holy as they exist in art

Steven Seidenberg - a dramatic intensification of Seidenberg’s career-long blurring of fiction, poetry, and philosophy—an accomplishment recalling the literary contributions of Blanchot, Bernhard, and pre-impasse Beckett

Leon Forrest - Fabulous, wildly comic, and Ulysses-like. a huge oratorio of the sacred and the profane, set in bars, churches, and barbershops .