Category Archives: Lena Lapschina­­­­

The Châteauneuf intervention: A very special in situ piece

I’m totally passionate about developing a piece of art for a unique space. Sometimes this happens in early stages of a project, in intense dialogue with the architects. Sometimes the édifice is already among us for a while, has surrounded itself with an aura.

Thus it’s clear that I’m very happy when I’m invited to produce an intervention at an eighthundred year old structure like the Châteauneuf église. This romanesque church in the Brionnais – it’s huge, it’s pure, it’s magnifique!

There aren’t that many events scheduled at this sacred facility these days, what makes this place the ideal hideaway for contemplation. That’s why I decided to create a very subtle installation here – a piece which can support you when you are in need for this support, a piece which doesn’t disturb you when you didn’t ask for disruption.

Here and there appears a word, here and there a cryptic pictorial message, on a wall, on the floor, or interwoven with the holy decoration. Don’t worry. Begin a new life.

“A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Girl”

Once upon a time and a very good time it was …

Before knowing to be an artist … she didn’t know yet that she would be an artist … before the moment she knew that she would be an artist …

In a James Joyceian manner, Lena Lapschina portrays an artist … namely an artist in her juvenescence, before she would even know that one day she would become an artist, and certainly before she would wake up in a country where artists believe it’s normal to live a precarious life in poverty.

Lena Lapschina is painting this full-of-happiness, brimming-with-confidence girl at Kulturhof Villach in bright colours, using (one of) her favourite material for murals: some rolls of heavy-duty duct tape.

Schauraum, Kulturhof Villach. Carinthia.

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Tempera on paper: “Ausländer/Inländer” – on view at State Gallery of Lower Austria

In “Ausländer/Inländer”, a diptych I painted two decades ago, we meet a young woman who is wearing really cool designer frames. She has clipped an ID card to her chest, which once identifies her as a national, once as a foreigner. It remains hidden at first glance whether this inscription is jewelry or stigma, freely chosen or prescribed by the authorities, true or false. Through this conscious abandonment of the intention, viewers are called upon to train their perceptual capacities – and to deal with labels and classifications, as well as especially the natural or unconsidered consequences of such a branding. That said, “Ausländer/Inländer” could be read as a work on identities and attributions.

The paintings are currently on view at State Gallery of Lower Austria, in the exhibition “Spuren und Masken der Flucht”, curated by Günther Oberhollenzer and Georg Traska.

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Those Were The Days: an AR-enhanced media installation

You see a display cabinet containing stranded goods, sand and eelgrass, the remains of a photograph, and a triptych painting on antique panels. Somebody has told you that the panels might be coated with short films, visible only through the lens of a smartphone. You hold your smartphone over the scenery, and things begin to move, and you can hear voices. Soon you’ll be lost in thought.

“Those Were The Days” is a brand new, augmented reality enhanced media installation. Exhibition views from Mdina Biennale 2020 on Malta.

A little alien


Kunsthalle Krems is displaying my triptych “Alien”. It is marker pen on corrugated five-layer cardboard, and I’ve done it in 2011. One can see a cogitating Yuri Gagarin, a robotic lunar vehicle attempting to turn the iconic 1969 moonboot footprints into dust, and apparently a conversation between a landlady and her alien guest.

While it is clear that the three panels’ common topic is alienness, the artist leaves it up to the viewer to decide whether she is reporting historical events or science fiction.

“Alien” is part of the group show “Ticket to the Moon” (curator: Andreas Hoffer).

Fly Me To The Moon! Bring Me To The Stars!

When Kunsthaus Zürich invited me to be in a heavenly exhibit called “Fly Me To The Moon”, I sat back, listened to sound from outer space – and remembered a photo series I’ve produced once upon a time at the various Star Cities. The following weeks I tried to recap that very moment when people for the first time left the Earth behind and set off towards the Stars. Scientists – from Galilei to Tsiolkovsky – came to my mind, and formulae, and pictures from cosmic voyages.

The result of this endeavour is “Bring Me To The Stars”. Eight photographs, with annotations in the margins, elucidatory or lunatic, a fusion of dreams and reality.

Kunsthaus Zürich, 4 April – 30 June [de] [en] [fr]. Curated by Cathérine Hug. Museum der Moderne, Salzburg, 20 July – 3 November 2019.

Am besten gefiel mir immer der Gravitationsunterricht

“Am besten gefiel mir immer der Gravitationsunterricht” is a forty meter long story on the walls of the Arlberg 1800 Resort, a deluxe hideaway in the Alps.

The guests who immerse into this mural – in English, its title would read something like “My favourite subject in school and ever since has been gravitation” – will find themselves in a world composed of gravitation-based experiences and authentic Sankt Christoph scenery.

Commissioned by Familie Werner.