In our imagination, Forum Stadtpark turns into the residence of a dissident’s dissident, the physicist, poet, and erstwhile mental patient Stefan Marinov (1931–1997). Unsatisfied with opposing the communist government of his native Bulgaria, Marinov also took up arms against Einstein’s theory of relativity. He emigrated in the 1970s and spent the last decades of his life in Graz, where he founded his own Institute of Fundamental Physics while working a day job as a groom.
Marinov’s main energies were focused on inventing a perpetuum mobile. Many of his colleagues, including Soviet dissident Andrei Sakharov, considered him a fraud. Nevertheless, Marinov enjoyed an international reputation among followers of alternative physics. He traveled broadly, including to California, where his theories fell on grateful esoteric ears. But when his experiments failed, he jumped to his death from an outdoor stairwell of the University of Grazʼs library. The installation in Forum Stadtpark combines Marinov’s books and papers with works by artists exploring physical principles that haunted him.
A group exhibition with:
- Exhibition opening: 21.9., 13.00 - 19.00
- Exhibition talk: 10.10 at 17:00 Forum Stadtpark
Stefan Marinov, a double dissident: Herwig G. Höller in conversation with Heinrich Pfandl Villa Perpetuum Mobile
more about the exhibition here: Villa Perpetuum Mobile
Vadim Fishkin (1965, Penza, Russia) is an artist who explores the relationships between science, personal experience, desire, and imagination, between metaphysics and pragmatism, and between the artificial and the real. He mainly investigates scientific methods, using technological advances for poetic purposes. Many of his works are informed by a distinctive sense of humor. He has participated in numerous group and solo exhibitions, including four Venice Biennials (1995, 2003, 2005, and 2017); Manifesta 1, Rotterdam; Manifesta 10, Saint Petersburg; the 3rd Istanbul Biennial; and the 9th Shanghai Biennale. He lives in Ljubljana.
Pedro Gómez-Egaña (1976, Bucaramanga, Colombia) is an artist who produces immersive spaces that seek to modulate audiences’ perception. His works problematize cultural definitions of time and temporality against the backdrop of a world dominated by saturation and speed, exploring how time is experienced due to our interaction with media culture. They have recently been shown at Staatliche Kunsthalle Baden-Baden; Munch Museum, Oslo; Oslo Opera House; Yarat Contemporary Art Space, Baku; Istanbul Biennial; Contour Biennial, Mechelen; Performa, New York; Kochi-Muziris Biennial; and Marrakech Biennial, among others. He lives in Oslo.
Michael Stevenson (1964, Inglewood, New Zealand) is an artist and educator who uses historical research and reconstruction to produce installations and artworks that index social, economic, and ideological global forces. His works frequently confront viewers with the material and tangible consequences of such forces and the physical realities they produce. Stevenson represented New Zealand at the 50th Venice Biennale and participated in numerous other biennials. Recent solo shows took place at the KW Institute for Contemporary Art, Berlin; Kunstinstituut Melly, Rotterdam; and Monash University Museum of Art, Melbourne. He lives in Berlin.
Hollis Frampton (1936, Wooster, OH, United States–1984, Buffalo, NY, United States) was an avant-garde filmmaker, photographer, poet, and art theorist, best known for his structural films from the 1960s and 1970s. In works such as Zorns Lemma (1970), Nostalgia (1971), and Critical Mass (1971), he combines found footage, photography, voice-overs, and time-based effects to explore the materiality of film and the relationship between sound, image, and language. Frampton had a keen interest in science and math and was also a pioneer of computer-generated imagery and video synthesis.
Alice Creischer (1960, Gerolstein, Germany) is an artist and curator whose artistic and theoretic agenda within institutional and economic critique has evolved over twenty years, recently focusing on the early history of capitalism and globalization. Recent solo exhibitions took place at The Wallach Art Gallery, New York; Galerie Wedding, Berlin; and Culturgest, Lisbon. She took part in the Kyiv Biennial 2015; Bergen Assembly 2013; 13th Istanbul Biennial; and Documenta 12, Kassel, among others. Her practice as cocurator of exhibitions such as The Potosí Principle (2010) correlates with her work as an artist and theorist. Creischer lives in Berlin.
Stefan Marinovs Nachlass
When Stefan Marinov committed suicide in 1997, he left behind an extensive body of work and a massive correspondence, part of which Herwig G. Höller, then a student of Slavonic Studies, retrieved and kept. As his papers show, Marinov’s dissent from post-Einsteinian physics began while he was still working in Bulgaria, where he was admitted to a psychiatric ward because of his experiments. A consummate writer of petitions and complaints, Marinov bombarded journals with contributions and wrote long responses to every rejection, eventually self-publishing books in the form of samizdat. In his enthusiasm for free energy, he became a key advocate for the spiritual community Methernitha and their Testatika machine, which he thought was a genuine perpetuum mobile. Some of Marinov’s supporters believed that his death was not a suicide, but an attempt to erase a legitimate source of free energy.