Alfred Hrdlicka was born in Vienna in 1928. Between 1946 and 1952 he studied painting at the Akademie der Bildenden Künste under Josef Dobrowsky and Albert Paris Gütersloh and afterwards at Fritz Wotruba's sculptor's class until 1957. Alfred Hrdlicka's first exhibition "Skulptur, Malerei und Graphik" took place at the Zedlitzhalle in Vienna and already four years later he participates together with Herbet Boeckl as Austria's representatives in the 32. Biennale in Venice.
Ever since Alfred Hrdlicka's works, which were one of the most important Austrian artistic positions, could be seen in numerous international exhibitions. In 1969 a comprehensive exhibition of his graphic works was shown at the Albertina, Vienna and in 1895 a retrospective at the Akademie der Künste in the former East-Berlin.
At the beginning of the 1970s the versatile artist was appointed to the "Akademie der Bildenden Künste" Stuttgart and at the "Staatliche Hochschule für bildende Kunst", Hamburg. In 1986 an appointment to the "Hochschule der Künste" in West-Berlin followed. In 1968 Hrdlicka was confronted with the world of mentally ill people for the first time. Ever since he dealt in his works with the human figure, endangered by threats, anguish, pain, misery and mental limit situations, which he understood as political agitation. Consistently he stuck in his sculptures, paintings and graphics to a figurative-expressive style and deliberately turned away from an unobjective image language.
Alfred Hrdlicka dealt et al. with thoughts of war and violence in the contra-memorial in Hamburg and in the memorial against war and fascism on the Albertina-Platz in Vienna which was unveiled in 1988.
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