*1972 Bern (CH) / *1967 San Francisco (USA), live and work in Burgdorf, CH
BEAUTIFUL STEPS #17
2.3 x 8.6 m
BEAUTIFUL ENTRANCE #8
5 x 16.5 m
courtesy of the artists
Sabina Lang and Daniel Baumann are a Swiss artist duo who have worked together since 1990 under the name Lang/Baumann. Their body of work includes installations, sculptures, large-scale wall or floor paintings, and architectural interventions. The two artists work in a wide range of materials—wood, metal, paint, carpet and inflatable structures—but their true medium is space. Most of their works are site-specific, some are modular and can be adapted to different situations. Many of their pieces can not only be viewed but actually used as well while others merely feign usability or artfully subvert it.
Through careful prior analysis of the location and context of their interventions, Lang/Baumann initiate a dialogue with the existing situation, often playfully upending expectations and disrupting patterns of perception. With their opulent imagery they deliberately seek a delicate balance between clearly defined categories like public and private space, familiar and strange, art and functionality. The Biennale Gherdëina 7 commissioned two outdoor works by Lang/ Baumann, that mark the beginning and end of the parcour in the center of St. Ulrich/ Ortisei: „Beautiful Steps #17“, next to the entrance of Sala Trenker and „Beautiful Entrance #8“ on the facade and entrance of Hotel Ladinia.
For the 7th Gherdëina Biennial, the steps of a connecting stairway in the center of town were painted with a motif comprising five different broad stripes. The stripes run parallel in luminous red, magenta and turquoise, as well as black and white across the straight stairway. At the center, on the roughly 1.2-meter-deep platform, the stripes change direction and intersect, to then continue running parallel again across the steps in a new succession of colors.
The bar on the ground floor of the Hotel Ladinia, which has been vacant for years, borders on the Antoniusplatz and has a canopy that surrounds the façade and corner of the building surrounding the bar with a rounded band. For the Biennale Gherdëina 7, the façade below the canopy was painted in black and white and bright vertical stripes. The geometry and width of these strips are based on the door and window openings and blend into the existing architecture. On the underside of the canopy the stripes continue in fanned out rays, which are oriented to the angle of the building corner. In addition, the existing lighting of the canopy was repaired. The ghostly abandoned building was given a punctual, but only supposed revival through the emphasis and exaggeration of the bar: the bar looks as if it is in operation; inside, however, everything still stands still.