"The Artist Family in the Bax - Four Generations", Künstlerhaus Geiger - the Bax, Übersee am Chiemsee July-September 2013.
After the third exhibition at the Bax dealt with the artistic father-son relationship, the current exhibition expands the circle of artists shown so far. It exhibits works by five artists from four generations of the Geiger family. Starting with Willi Geiger, the doyen of the artist family, and his famous son Rupprecht Geiger, selected works by his two grandsons Lenz and Florian are added, as well as photographs by his great-granddaughter Nanda Lavaquerie. In the Geiger family, art is an important and natural part of life together. From generation to generation, art has been passed down from generation to generation: art is always a topic at the dinner table, there is a lively exchange about art techniques and exhibitions, art trips are taken together and art projects are realized.
Willi's affinity for art was awakened by his mother Maria, née Leidl. He makes his way in the art world and is at the time a recognized graphic artist and portrait painter, but later shares the fate of his generation of artists. After the twelve-year Nazi dictatorship, he is confronted with abstract art, the dictates of modernism. Throughout his life, Willi enjoys portraying the other members of his family: his wife, son, daughter-in-law and grandchildren pose for him. He takes his son Rupprecht on numerous trips, teaches him the craft and is in turn strongly influenced by his son's artistic work in later years.
Despite first distancing himself from his father's artistry, the trained architect Rupprecht devoted himself entirely to art as an "autodidact" at the end of the war. His continuous, seven-decade preoccupation with color as the central theme of his entire oeuvre culminated in Rupprecht declaring color to be his elixir of life and ascribing to it the rank of a family member, as it were. The art world pays tribute to his work: already celebrated with exhibitions and awards during his lifetime, he is and remains the most successful artist of the Geiger family.
With art and the two charismatic personalities of grandfather and father together, the next generation of Geiger grows up. Following the family tradition, Rupprecht's two sons, Lenz and Florian, choose the professions of freelance artist and architect, respectively. Their new start in the south of France in 1973 and the subsequent concentration on organic farming perhaps provide the necessary distance from their previous careers. Thanks to their newfound distance, years later they can once again devote themselves to art: Lenz returns to painting and turns to land art as a new art form. Florian artistically processes his lifelong fascination with the element wind and has been assembling found objects in assemblages for ten years. His daughter Nanda Lavaquerie chooses another medium, photography, to realize her artistic ideas. Her colorful, abstract analog photographs reflect longings and dreams.
Art usually harbors potential for conflict, which can come to a head in an artist's family in a confined space. Especially when one outshines the other or lacks public recognition, which is often measured only by the market value achieved and not by the quality of the artistic position. Despite glaring differences, there are certain points of contact, albeit subliminal, in the work of the five artists on display. The generational exhibition at the Bax has not set itself the task of listing or even analyzing individual parallels. It wants to offer a platform for sensual reflection on art, including whether and, if so, what mutual influences can be discerned in biographically determined space across generations.
4. Exhibition 2013