Claudia Comte (b. 1983, Switzerland) is best known for her site-specific installations, featuring wooden sculptural forms set against graphic, abstract wall paintings. She creates a unique, rule-based measurement system for each new body of work so that every piece relates to a particular scale. For her first retrospective survey exhibition "10 Rooms, 40 Walls, 1059 m2" at the Kunstmuseum Luzern, this principle has become the agenda: the artist has used 10 rooms, created 40 wall paintings, and filled 1,059 square meters of space by combining the painted museum walls with new series of paintings and sculptures. Despite such regimented structures, Comte’s pieces are imbued with a sense of playfulness, humor and irreverence, puncturing the seriousness connected with minimalism.
Hovering between painting, sculpture, and installation, Comte’s works are based on references to popular culture—including cartoons as well as vernacular handicrafts—nature, heraldic symbols, and art historical movements (Op art, Pop art, Concrete art). Her sculptures can be read as persiflage on classical sculpture, while at the same time negotiating questions of display, the role of the plinth, and simple ground/figure issues.
Bringing together texts by Fanni Fetzer (Director, Kunstmuseum Luzern), Chus Martínez (Head of the Institute of Art of the FHNW Academy of Arts and Design in Basel), Op art specialist Matthieu Poirier (freelance curator and critic, Paris), and a conversation with Claudia Comte by American curator Neville Wakefield, this monograph offers the first complete survey of Claudia Comte’s work.
Published with Kunstmuseum Luzern.