Franz Xaver Ölzant
(Austria) *1934 in Oberzeiring
For almost six decades the sculptural creations of Franz Xaver Ölzant have had an established place in the international art market. After studying at the University of Applied Arts and the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna, Ölzant was himself from 1986 to 2001 a professor at the Academy. Through his use of diverse materials and varied forms, his work resists classification. The objects he creates frequently recall natural forms – shells, boulders, plants or even tuffaceous rock, yet they never seem obviously figurative. Rather, the material – for example through the use of polished surfaces – throws their artificial, abstract quality into sharp relief. The bronze entitled “N3 Barockvase” is a good example of this combination of an extravagant aesthetic, which can be considered characteristic of the Baroque period, and a clearly suggested organic pattern. The surface full of holes has a tactile quality; space and haptics take on a special meaning. The way a sculpture opens out into space, or defines it by way of its proportions, is connected to how that space is itself quite literally “grasped” by the observer, by seeing and touching.