'WD-Spiral Part One CINEMA' by Hermann Maier Neustadt

WD-Spiral Part One CINEMA (2001) by Hermann Maier Neustadt is a large open air installation made of yellow and transparent glassfibre reinforced polyester resin sheeting material, mounted on a tubular metal frame. The work is designed so that the public can enter and sit down on one of the chairs facing a window that looks out upon the surroundings. The work was initially made for the temporary exhibition Sonsbeek 9. Relatively soon after reinstallation in the Kröller-Müller Museum’s sculpture garden however, structural problems occurred. The chosen material and the construction were unsuitable for permanent display. Prolonged exposure to the elements and the behaviour of some visitors caused serious damage.







Conservator Susanne Kensche interviewing Hermann Maier Neustadt. The artist past away on January 15, 2009.

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As a result of climate variations, major tensions developed within the synthetic material which the construction was not designed for. As a result, it was not long before the sheets underwent structural damage due to serious deformations and even cracks. Water and dirt also found their way into the work of art. The sculpture lost its aesthetic appeal - the taut design and gloss. The inside area had to be closed off to visitors, whereby the interaction of the public with the work of art and the surroundings was no longer possible. As a consequence, the work had lost its essence.

The conservation of polyester in outside conditions is a relatively new area of interest in the conservation of modern art. Extensive research has meanwhile been carried out into WD-Spiral Part One CINEMA, including a meticulous registration of the conditions, research into materials, a damage analysis and an interview with the artist. After considering various treatment options, the work of art is shortly to be re-assembled and will re-open to the public as a “nature cinema” in the garden of the Kröller-Müller Museum.

Susanne Kensche is working on WD-Spiral Part One CINEMA in the context of her graduation project at the Fachhochschule Köln, in collaboration with DSM.

Project coordination: Suzanne Kensche, supervisor: Sanneke Stigter
Duration: Nov 4, 2008 - Apr 30, 2009