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Gelitin: Democratic Sculpture 7

Courtesy of artist

About the program

Neubauer Collegium for Culture and Society

5701 S Woodlawn Ave, Chicago, IL 60637

Monday-Friday: 9:00 AM-4:00 PM

Known internationally for their ambitious public art projects and transgressive performances, Gelitin are indefatigable partisans of the ludic impulse in art, forever honoring Friedrich Schiller’s claim that “man only plays when he is in the fullest sense of the word a human being, and he is only fully a human being when he plays.” This exhibition features a monumental sculpture of a pizza that guests will be invited to activate by poking their heads through to make toppings. Democratic Sculpture 7 traversed the city as part of the opening festivities of This is a Rehearsal.




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Neubauer Collegium for Culture and Society


5701 S Woodlawn Ave, Chicago, IL 60637


Hyde Park


The Neubauer Collegium for Culture and Society is a collaborative research center at the University of Chicago that creates environments where new forms of thinking emerge and thrive.


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Vienna, Austria


Gelitin creates situations where people interact with one another, humorously abandoning decorum, and shares relational art’s interest in constructing a convivial public space. Their practice embraces childlike excess and employs elements such as heat and water, or changes in speed and scale, to produce physical effects that radically alter participants’ perception. Although Gelitin often works on a large scale and the very shapes of the objects produced, it would be a mistake to primarily discuss their work using an architectural language and worldview. What they do may look like “building,” but can be better described as “making” (a key distinction and even opposition). The entities that resemble architectural structures remain works of art, free from the pragmatic pressure of adding up or otherwise making sense as objects of everyday social use.

The Austrian collective Gelitin is composed of four artists (Wolfgang Gantner, Ali Janka, Florian Reither and Tobias Urban), who first met at summer camp in 1978. Since 1993, they have been working together and taking part in international exhibitions.

The City is the Site