Art as Salavation
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and Pictures of Reality

Documentary film (52 min)
by Petrus van der Let and Martin Luksan, 2010

A number of Austrian painters of the 20th century did not pay tribute to the existing zeitgeist in abstraction, but portrayed it realistically. Despite a lack of recognition, they managed to leave behind a considerable body of work that is gaining in appreciation today and some of their pictures have increased 1000fold in value.

The documentary film covers motifs and styles of painting from 1900 to the present, focusing on the controversy between representational and abstract painting in Austria.
What is remarkable is that a great number of artists are powered by irrational ideologies, as if they wanted to prove that their art leads to salvation and is nothing less than a better kind of religion.

  • Length: 52 min, 45 min versions
  • Format: HDV, Digi Beta, PAL, 16:9, stereo
  • Directors: Petrus van der Let, Martin Luksan
  • Camera: Benjamin Epp, Walter Wehmeyer
  • Production: Petrus van der Let Filmproduktion in cooperation with the Austrian Ministry of Education, ORF, PLANET-TV, SKANDINAVIA-TV Vienna Film Fund, Film Funds of Lower Austria, Styria and Tyrol.
  • Festivals: MEDIMED in Sitges, Spain, October 8-10th 2010
  • Broadcast: BRalpha 04/13/2010 at 9pm (45min)
  • Distribution: Petrus van der Let
  • Trailer:
  • Interviews and off-narration: Where the Gods come from (PDF)

Book to the film:

  • Leander Kaiser, Michael Ley (eds.) Die ästhetische Gnosis der Moderne, Vienna 2008;