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Ephemeropterae˜ XIV / XV+

14 September 2012


Songs of space, time and lust

Three chords and the truth. Someone said that was the essence of country music. Icelandic artist Ragnar Kjartansson agrees. In is search for artistic truths mr. Kjartansson has used music as his compass. Kjartansson´s art is in many cases based on music. On songs. Ragnar has used lines melodies and chord changes from country, blues, popular and classical music as the structural chord of many of his works. Ragnar will perform the songs that shaped his art in the Augarten.

The creative tools of Icelandic artist / pop star Ragnar Kjartansson, member of rock band Trabant, are drawings, paintings, installations, films, performative acts (often long durational and nonpublic), his media are melancholia and nostalgia. His film "The Man" (2011) is a portrait of the Blues legend and then 96-year old Pinetop Perkins (1913-2011) playing piano under the wide open skies of Texas. Rather than following biographical data, Kjartansson concentrates on grasping the ephemeral moment of the actual performance of Perkins. This week in Vienna, Ragnar will sing songs about space, time and lust under the open sky of the Augarten.


Wanda Coleman was scheduled to perform at the Ephemeropterae˜ XIV/XV+. Unfortunately her journey to Vienna had to be cancelled but of course she remains part of the Ephemeropterae˜ family.

Known as "The L.A. Blueswoman," Wanda Coleman writes jazz-rooted poems and stories about the American "underclass", producing 20 books of poetry and prose. She was born in the community of Watts, raised in South Central Los Angeles, and lived through two race riots (August 1965 and April 1992). She was a seminal figure of post-60s literary L.A., and has shared the stage with such cultural icons as Timothy Leary, Alice Coltrane, Allen Ginsberg, and Los Lobos. An Emmy-winning scriptwriter, she has twice been a finalist for poet laureate of California (2005, 2012), and was awarded the Shelley Memorial Prize by the Poetry Society of America in May 2012.

"Coleman applies a poet's economy of words to her fiction, setting a scene with lightning-quick strokes, letting a detail, a dialogue, or the brisk vernacular speak for itself. Or, alternatively, she will step in and take center stage, an omniscient voice seeing beyond the impending and inevitable tragedy, but powerless to change either narrative or outcome. Powerless, that is, only within the bounds of the story, for Coleman is an author devoted to change, personal and political, writing to affect the balance of power in America."

ORT: Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary,
TBA21–Augarten, Scherzergasse 1A, 1020 Vienna, Austria

Wiener Städtische Versicherungsverein

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