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01 January 2018

Space and privacy, space and time

In line with Manfred Makra's "Unified Fields" exhibition of 2017, Makra produced an abstract art piece specifically for Schoenherr, currently installed in one of the boardrooms in Vienna. Insight into the discussion held between Guido Kucsko and Manfred Makra: 

Makra immediately puts one at ease, and his calm temperament is in balance with his minimalistic art works which carry depth and beauty. Makra's take on privacy is truly edifying. When he talks about his relationship between individualism and community it becomes evident that he ultimately needs both. He examines the interplay between privacy and opening up, and the give and take of energy between people, between the energy of an artwork and the artist, and in turn, the audience.

With his understanding of privacy in mind, Makra always returns to the concept of space. Space and privacy, he believes are intertwined. Space, and what it holds are fundamental to his art. Where he creates; the space in which he creates. 

When looking at a new space to create in, and in particular when he saw the Schoenherr boardroom for the first time, Makra describes how he assesses a room to determine how his "wall installations, wall paintings will resonate with the space." … "I try to get a feel for a room, the atmosphere of the room, and ask myself the first question: What does the room need? And I walked into this room which is wonderful, and I thought it needed a bit of soil, well the color of soil … and I thought it would be really nice to sit here and have a horizon in earth colors in front of you. And these colours go back historically to the first wall paintings."

Linking the way in which Makra approached Schoenherr's boardroom for his installation to the artwork he chose to create, the question of what art could mean in the context of being a manager arises. Makra believes "the most precious asset for a manager, is time. The calendars of managers are filled. The more entered, the more there is to be done. With an artist it is exactly the opposite. The less he has entered into his calendar, the more he can afford to devote himself to his art and to make something of quality. Here I see art as really supportive, because one thing is interesting, one can observe with oneself, if one creates space, whether it is a workspace or a private space, one always has the feeling that one also has more time. I've come to the point that people who have little sense of creating spaces, or creating outer spaces, or setting them up, that these people are more nervous and feel they have no time. When I experience space, time also expands. This is what I try to do with my installations, to have the effect that not only space expands, but also time."  

That which is private and that which is open to scrutiny, it all boils down to a give and take of energy between people, between the energy of an artwork and the artist, and in turn, the audience. Art resonating in a space can allow one to focus, Makra's art certainly does: His art (and art generally) being a bridge reaching from the inside outwards, and from the outside in. 


Manfred Makra
Born in 1956 in Graz, Austria, Manfred Makra is the artist with whom we collaborated on the 2018 roadmap.

Makra started painting at age 19 after encountering the work of Antonio Caldera, the Italian painter who found inspiration in the lighting of landscapes, and who is known for his abstract works. As a result, Makra developed his own style using what he terms "contemplative colour", resulting in his exceptional works which he coins "poetry of the minimal."

Since 1990 Makra has frequently collaborated with international architects. A "zen aesthetic" influences his work, more profoundly so after his visits to Japan. 

In his collaboration with us, Makra produced an artwork linked to and flowing from his "Unified Fields" exhibition of 2017. The series is clean, minimal and abstract, making use of balanced muted colours which elegantly tie in with the subtle geometry and spacial aspects used in his work. 

Makra holds regular exhibitions throughout Europe, Japan, Australia and Dubai, and currently lives and works in Vienna, Austria.

For more information about the artist and his work please visit  


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