JOHANN HAUSER
(1926-1996 | AUSTRIA)

Johann Hauser was born near Bratislava, Slovakia. As a child he was placed in a special school and remained illiterate. Considered to be feeble-minded, he was admitted to a psychiatric institution where he was described as dreamy, impulsive and quarrelsome. In 1949 he was transferred to a psychiatric hospital in Klosterneuburg, near Vienna, where he would remain for the rest of his life. Gradually he became one of the most successful artists of the Haus der Kunstler in Gugging, Austria, also thanks the encouragement from his psychiatrist, Dr Leo Navratil. Physically separated from the main hospital buildings, the Artists’ House provided Hauser and the other artist-patients with a space in which to live and work according to their own creative desires, and unhindered by therapeutic imperatives. 
His powerful use of form and colour belie the fact that his favoured medium was coloured pencil. Drawing with a fierce intensity, he managed to create an overall painterly effect. The intense pressure he applied left indents in the paper and occasionally even tore it, but other times his work was quiet and restrained, featuring just one object or form. 
Johann Hauser was inspired by the portraits of film stars, images of current events and photos of engines of war that were reproduced in illustrated magazines. In defiance of the principles of representation, proportion and perspective, he created his own style.

JOHANN HAUSER
(1926-1996 | AUSTRIA)

Johann Hauser è nato vicino a Bratislava, Slovacchia. Sin da bambino fu inserito in una scuola speciale rimanendo analfabeta. Considerato “debole di mente” fu ammesso in un’istituzione psichiatrica dove venne descritto come sognatore, impulsivo e litigioso. Nel 1949 è stato trasferito in un ospedale psichiatrico a Klosterneuburg, vicino a Vienna, dove sarebbe rimasto per il resto della sua vita. Gradualmente divenne uno degli artisti di maggior successo della Haus der Kunstler di Gugging, Austria, anche grazie all’incoraggiamento del suo psichiatra Leo Navratil. Fisicamente separato dai principali edifici ospedalieri, la Haus der Kunstler fornì ad Hauser ed ai suoi colleghi artisti-pazienti uno spazio in cui vivere e lavorare secondo i propri desideri creativi, senza ostacoli dettati da imperativi terapeutici. 
L’uso potente di forma e colore fanno intuire facilmente la sua preferenza per le matite colorate. L’intensità feroce dei suoi disegni permette di creare un lavoro pittorico di grande effetto. La forte pressione che viene applicata dalla matita ha lasciato occasionalmente strappi sul foglio, ma altre volte il suo lavoro era tranquillo e sobrio, con un solo oggetto o forma. 
Johann Hauser è stato ispirato dai ritratti di stelle del cinema, immagini di eventi e foto di macchine da guerra riprodotte su riviste illustrate attuali. A dispetto dei principi di rappresentazione, proporzione e prospettiva, ha inventato il suo stile unico. 

Mädchen im gelben kleid 2, 1967 © Künstler aus Gugging
Löwe oder tiger, 1969, © Künstler aus Gugging
Türkischer palast, 1971 © Künstler aus Gugging
Nackte frau mit hut, 1986 © Künstler aus Gugging
Blonde frau, 1986 © Künstler aus Gugging

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