Kevin A. Rausch, born in Wolfsberg in 1980, today living in Vienna, is a painter, drawer and object and installation artist.
In its exhibitions, the gallery Villa Köppe mainly presents landscapes of this artist. It remains hidden to the observer if they are imaginary landscapes or if they are grounded somewhere as well as the time in which the events happen. Is it thousands of years ago or are they years to come that is meant? Associations with volcanic events or original states that include the powers of creation and destruction come into existence. What is meant? Are they dream landscapes or surreal rooms? The world after the apocalypse?
A single human being can be seen who is facing the unknown world. The entrance into this enigmatic world, its exploration and conquest are quite an effort. Rough, deserted sections, threatening in its bulkiness and dismissive with its enormous pieces of rock piling up forming high mountains in the distance. Darkness and light, nearness and distance, unconversant wasteland with high mountains and deep valleys in the distance. Entering it is a risk – and yet this foreign country is enchanting due to its grandness and its subtle play of light and shadow.
Kevin A. Rausch is playing with the disparate. For contrary to these both fantastic-dramatic as well as threatening-gloomy, partly monumental landscape visions, the artist is showing idyllically and poetically appearing sceneries as a sign of hope and vision of a life that, in an ecological sense, is adapted to nature.
It is amazing that the Arcadian myth – even though subliminally – has been a universal symbol and image of happiness over the centuries like in the works of the Vienna artist. Counter-images prevail, corresponding with the threatening signs of time: The failing and falling creature and the scenery of disaster are core metaphors of modern time and are linked with the fears of a collapse of the biosphere, the worldwide decay of social and cultural structures as well as the nuclear self-destruction of man.
However, Kevin R. Rausch’s confident, optimistic Arcadian visions do not symbolize the mourning for the lost “innocence” of our relation to the world, but are a sign of hope. They are challenging us to re-think things, to far-reaching changes on all levels of social, political, economic and technological relations, linked with a change towards human reason.