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Martin Heller

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Martin Heller


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Things are not just things in themselves

Art is not sufficient to itself either. Design is more than just a property. And nothing speaks for itself. The shadow cast by the last century: an erosion of all that could be taken for granted. The self-determined standpoint of viewers and observers throws world and image open to the iridescent processes of perception. And everything is in some way related to everything else. But how? This is where Heller has something to say. There may be no reason for it, but there is always an appropriate justification. And a proposal that seems convincing. Museums are an extension of the construction zone, an area for the exchange of ideas, exhibitions are an aesthetic laboratory. There is a great deal to support this point of view. For example things, themes, images, books, history and Switzerland.

Things remain voiceless when unaccompanied by an appropriate discourse, or when perception itself does not become image. Heller lends to many, though not all, the chance to speak, in order to see more precisely. The mirror of plurality, so as to get to the point. As a result the coordinates, anchor points and vectors reveal their intended meaning. This is how the things occur. Together with Heller. If we ask for the exact explanation, or should we perhaps say, the secret of Heller? It lies in an infallibly lived elasticity between closeness and distance. In perception. In give and take. In showing and saying. Heller is, in the truest sense of the word, a stylistic conception. With all the appropriately rhetorical resources available to him on both the theoretical and the practical level. He locates concepts and mentalities, so as to move between contrasts and contradictions with an effect of commitment. Surprising correlations result. Meanings acquire form, images develop, conceptions settle in our consciousness, undermining and enriching entrenched conceptions. Heller is enthusiasm itself. He makes of perception a game, in which a great many players can take part, in all seriousness. He gives a voice to art and design, in a form of communication and with a vocabulary such as in Switzerland – where if cervelat was allowed a certain importance its culturally nourishing role was not recognised, and where morality was not permitted to indulge in any aesthetic escapades on the side – would have been unthinkable in the past. And behold, Martin Heller.

The Design Preis Schweiz honours his path – making it a path that Swiss design in general is warmly recommended to follow. Decidedly – in transcendence of all boundaries. 
André Vladimir Heiz