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Anna Wintelerartist sheet 55/55

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60 years of performance art in Switzerland museum Tinguely, 20.09.2017 - 28.01.2018

Le petit déjeuner sur la route d'après Manet (1979, video, 22')

For Winteler, this video, in which she walks slowly along the Rhine and undresses as she goes, marks the transition from her practice as a dancer to that as a visual artist. The action was filmed by Reinhard Manz.

La Traviata II (1980, video, 24'41'')

In La Traviata II, the artist tumbles about near a pile of objects until the vibrations on the wooden floor cause the pile to collapse.

JEUNE-FEMME-CH (1981-1982, vidéo, 22')

The artist, wearing a skirt, performs a series of handstands in front of the camera until she loses her balance.

PerformanceProcess Paris, Centre culturel suisse 18.09-13.12.15

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From ballet to physiotherapy

Although Anna Winteler stopped producing art in 1991, her works remain very significative. ...

Although Anna Winteler stopped producing art in 1991, her works remain very significative.

In the 1980s, Anna Winteler was one of the best-known young performance, video and installation artists in Switzerland. She grew up in Lausanne, trained as a ballet dancer, and began to work in Basel as a self-taught artist in the late 1970s.

Her experimental work fascinated young artists—including Jean-Christophe Ammann, then director of the Kunsthalle in Basel. In 1988, in a solo exhibition there, she showed her Discours des Montagnes à la Mere (sic), for which a catalogue was also published. Anna Winteler was part of a circle of artists that formed around Eric Hattan and Silvia Bächli who, since 1981, had directed the Filiale art space in Basel. At the heart of Filiale's activities was what was called at the time “work situated in space” by Swiss artists—the ancestor of installations. In 1984, Anna Winteler contributed to the exhibition Das subjektive Museum (The Subjective Museum) organised by Filiale.

Her first video, Le Petit Déjeuner sur la route d'après Manet (1979), remains one of her best known works: a performance recorded by Reinhard Manz. For Winteler, this video marks her transition from performing art to “free art”. It shows her walking slowly with even steps along the banks of the Rhine, stripping as she goes. The subject of her interventions and performances, and soon also of her video work and photographic installations, was the experience of the body “in process”, in motion and in space. In 1991 she produced the last video work of her career: Geriatrie 1A – Das Hohelied (Geriatrics 1A – the Song of Songs). The artist took a camera attached to a wheelchair along the corridors of the geriatrics ward of Basel's main hospital for twenty-four hours, then edited the footage into a 39-minute video.

Despite her success as an artist, Winteler decided to give up her artistic work and enter the medical field. Since then, she has worked as a physiotherapist in Basel.

 

Roman Kurzmeyer

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