The two artists, with their ingenious eye for the characteristics and idiosyncrasies of their fellow human beings, have both spent their entire lives tackling the subject of their homeland – be it satirically or empathetically – and have shaped our imaginations with unmistakable portraits. The shrill confrontation of their so different yet at times astonishingly similar works shows what a gifted artist Manfred Deix was, and opens up a new way of looking at the profound, lesser-known humour of Werner Berg.
Werner Berg was born in Wuppertal/Elberfeld in 1904. After gaining a degree in economics at university he attended the academies in Vienna and Munich. In 1931 he moved to the Rutarhof farm in the Slovenian-speaking south-eastern part of Carinthia, where he lived as a farmer and painter until his death in 1981.
Manfred Deix was born in St. Pölten in 1949 and grew up there, later moving to Böheimkirchen. From 1968 to 1975 he attended the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna. In 1984 Deix married his long-time girlfriend Marietta in Las Vegas. He spent his final years with his wife and 23 cats near Vienna. Deix died in 2016 following a serious illness.
Large-scale façade designs extend the exhibition into the public sphere.
The museum’s sculpture garden shows “Verbal Images” by Werner Hofmeister. For many years, he has analysed the reciprocal relationship between image and text.