„Helga Philipp is justly known today, as a pioneer in concrete and Op Art in Austria“ writes the art historian Brigitte Borchhardt-Birbaumer in her catalogue distribution to the posthumous retrospective of the artist at the state museum NÖ. But Helga Philipp was also not unfamiliar during her lifetime period. Already in 1967 she was represented in Werner Hofmans exhibition „kinetika“ at the 20th century museum.
However, the aesthetic taste had changed after that and „concrete“ never had a good breeding ground in Austria. Today concrete art becomes a continuing actuality and Eugen Gomringers description of Philipps work as a „science of senses“ gets a new meaning.
With a selective view on the 1960s and 1970s we would like to display that this, with masterly precision working artist, in her oeuvre, gathered all forms of Op Art, the concrete and kinetic art, and also in the sense of avantgarde, did not run through a process of disengagement, but worked linear and refined herself. Helga Philipps dispute with the course of aesthetic perception shows an explosive actuality.
Media-reality, second reality and virtuality of reality can be found in her work. Those operate with a logical network of all key concepts of her time: beholder, image, movement, space, light and variation.
„For Helga Philipp, circle, rectangle and square, quadrangle or polygon haven`t been objective platonical bodys, but elements of an combinatorical game, in whose center we can find the viewer. „Everything was moveable, figures, everything was changeable.“ (Peter Weibel, Helga Philipp. Das Bild und der Betrachter, eine neue Gleichung der Malerei, 2010). Helga Philipp was easily urging the perception-space to a thinking-space, with simple mediums of minimal art and concept art
Helga Philipp (1939-Wien-2002) was from 1965 until her death in 2002 working as a professor at the institution of higher education (posterior university) for Applied Arts in Vienna and accompanied generations of artists as a tutor.