OTTMAR HÖRL – Sculpture – Hear Nothing (2006) – Silver


This amusing garden gnome sculpture is part of the trilogy the Bearers of Secrets: See nothing, Hear nothing, Say nothing” (2006). Accepting an invitation from the Art Fair art Karlsruhe, Professor Ottmar Hörl, President of the Academy of Fine Arts in Nuremberg, presented an installation of 1200 dwarfs titled Bearers of Secrets: See nothing, Hear nothing, Say nothing”. The gnomes were designed in the three different poses (respectively covering their eyes, ears and mouth). Professor Hörl spoke of a “gentle provocation” particularly in the City of Justice. His parade of gnomes arranged in a rectangular form on a gigantic wooden construction certainly provoked some smiles. The comparative political idea, which may be individually interpreted by any spectator, represents an art which seeks to provoke discussion and doesn’t try to hide in the protected atmosphere of a museum. Those gnomes refer to the popular pictorial maxim the Three wise monkeys”, a 17th-century carving over a door of the famous Tōshō-gÅ« shrine in Nikkō, Japan. The three monkeys, Mizaru, Kikazaru and Iwazaru together embody the proverbial principle to “See no evil, Hear no evil, Speak no evil”. There are various meanings ascribed to the monkeys and the proverb including associations with being of good mind, speech and action. In the Western world the phrase is often used to refer to those who deal with impropriety by turning a blind eye. Dimensions: 14.57″ x 6.69″ x 3.94″ Materials: Molded plastic, made in Germany. Special edition signed by the artist.

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