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“If you consider
artworks as
crystalline forms
of meaning,

art becomes

a way of



BIO. Isabella Kohlhuber (born 1982), lives and works in Vienna. She studied transmedia art with Brigitte Kowanz at the University of Applied Arts Vienna and was a lecturer there from 2013 to 2019. Her drawings, collages, sculptures and media installations revolve around writing and pictorial or auditory linguistic forms. Her works have been exhibited nationally and internationally and were most recently on view at the PAC Festival Marseille (FR), Galleria Doris Ghetta (I) at Vienna Contemporary (AT), and Bluerider Art Gallery Taipei (TWN). Numerous installations have been implemented temporarily and permanently in public spaces.

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Photos: © Rudi Strobl

Untitled (lines) – algorithmic drawings  (2012, 2017- ongoing)
Ink on paper, 100 x 140 cm  

"In Isabella Kohlhuber's drawings, the specifications are manifold: the sheet is mounted horizontally on the wall; the artist's body positions itself en face to it without the fixation of a second, supporting hand; the lines are drawn by a single body movement without interruption from left to right with always the same distances. Every "mistake", every irregularity is thereby taken up in the next line - for the distances between them should always remain the same - and thus integrated into the formula. Within this set of rules, the living thereby penetrates: the trembling of the hand, the sometimes strong, sometimes unsteady stand, the joy or the tiredness during the creation show up as mutually reinforcing visual undulations. The resulting image becomes a vibrating pictogram of the gesture of inscribing the artist's body."

Text (excerpt): Angela Akbari 
Shown at numerous venues such as Lenikus Studios, 2012, Galleria Doris Ghetta Ortisei 2016, Bluerider Art Gallery Taipei 2018/19, Traklhaus Salzburg 2020

Photos: © Isabella Kohlhuber

Aus dem Gesetz [From The Law]  (2016)
Vapour barrier sheet, lasercut, §76 UrhG, steel, 100 x 1600 cm, dimensions variable

"Isabella Kohlhuber's newly produced floor work „Aus dem Gesetz“ made from vapor barrier sheet is based on a passage from the Austrian copyright law on the protective rights of sound carriers. The foil, which is actually used to prevent moisture from rising from the ground, in combination with an outdated text of the law cut from it in the artist's developed typeface „Bastards“, shows the effective powers of language in all its dependence on context and convention."

Text: Christian Egger, from the booklet accompanying the exhibition "Sighs Trapped By Liars“, Künstlerhaus Graz 2016.

Shown at Künstlerhaus Graz (AT), »Sighs Trapped By Liars – Language In Art«, 2016/3/12–2016/5/29 Bluerider Art Gallery Taipei, Isabella Kohlhuber – Untitled, 2018/12/8 – 2019/1/31   and various other exhibitions

Photos: © Peter Mochi

No No No (2016)
LED-light, motion sensors, micro-controller, adhesive film, polystyrene, varnish, 4,20 x 3,70 x 2,80 m

Shown at Artistic Bokeh, Museumsquartier Vienna, 2016/10/7 – 2016/11/10 curated by Mz* Baltazar’s Lab as part of the series „uno, dois, drei…“

With the installation „No No No“ the black glass window of the show room Artistic Bokeh in Vienna’s Museumsquartier becomes a changeable interface. Isabella Kohlhuber applies interactive devices to reveal the threshold of function and dysfunction in the languages of humans and machines. Kohlhuber uses adhesive foil fixed on the window, displaying letter-forms as permanent disposable tools. Motion sensors cause viewers involuntarily to activate or deactivate its visibility. The message thereby occasionally withdraws from perceptibility. „No No No“ opens a conceptual gap between the showroom‘s window and its minimal content, while gently swapping between elements of negation (“no”) and activation (“on”). Does the artist intend to play off today‘s necessity of an affirmative, pleasing language against an inner silent resistance? And does repetition, as given in the title, make a gesture of refusal stronger? While trying to decontextualize the artist asks “can there ever be no context?”


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