press release

Over the last thirty years Josef Strau has developed a multifaceted body of work, which derives from the written word and is likewise characterized by shifting social roles. He produced articles on art for professional journals, wrote press releases and catalogue essays for artists of his acquaintance, and organized numerous collaborative projects as the founder of the infamous project space Galerie Meerrettich in Berlin.

In his artistic practice, Strau investigates different notions of text-production and the forms and contexts they take. His texts predominantly engage with automatic writing and form the basis for ‘narrative spaces’. Printed on posters, they typically comment on biographical stories, but also on art production and writing itself as a fragmentary structure between authorship and representation. Regardless of the used media, his works evolve from the texts that they serve to display. The artist also employs this method in Bremen, where he uses the retrospective format to convey an overview of his continuous work with text via a selection of text-based posters. This overview is combined with a second presentation: newly produced works, which are inspired by Byzantine icon painting.

Josef Strau has widely exhibited internationally, including shows at the Secession, Vienna; The Renaissance Society, Chicago; Arnolfini, Bristol; Stedelijk Docking Station, Amsterdam; and Malmö Konsthall. Invitation Epiphany is his first solo exhibition in a German institution.

The exhibition is curated by Gergana Todorova.