Priska von Martin

um 1955 - 1956

About the object

The small-format bronze sculpture Elch, depicts an elk standing on three legs, its left hind leg stretched forward to scratch itself with its hoof. The representation is stylised and reduced to a set of characteristic basic forms; when viewed close-up, the surface appears somewhat uneven and rough. The five incisions on the animal’s flanks, which von Martin has added to the sculpture as deliberate gestures, are immediately striking. If one were to understand these deep incisions as a realistic representation of an injury to the animal, the elk would have perished long ago. This impression is contradicted by the animal’s erect posture and the fact that the »seriously injured« animal is actually scratching itself because it has an itch. Viewed in this light, the sculpture takes on a humorous, almost ironic character despite the presence of mortal injuries.

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