The filmmaker, photographer, and painter Ferry Radax (1932, Vienna, AT) has been a central figure in the Austrian avant-garde cinema since the 1950s. Between 1959 and 1960 he shot Sonne halt! (Sun stop!), his most famous experimental film. The poet and writer Konrad Bayer (1932–1964 Vienna, AT) played a particularly important role in its conception, acting as a performer, co-author, and narrator of passages from his novel der sechste sinn (the sixth sense).
Based on Radax’s experiment with Sonne halt!, “to find the most perfect synthesis of spoken literature and film in its symbolic form,” the exhibition is also dedicated to the manner in which Bayer’s other texts resonate in his following films. The two artists met in Vienna during the 1950s, when the Wiener Gruppe (Vienna Group, 1954–1964) was formed there. The literary works and actions of its main protagonists are considered to be the most important achievements of the Austrian post-war avant-garde.
Radax was awarded the 2007 Otto-Breicha-Preis für Fotokunst (Otto Breicha Prize for Art Photography), with an accompanying exhibition at the Museum der Moderne Salzburg in the Rupertinum building. In the current presentation, his films with references to Bayer and the photographic work relating to the film Sonne halt! from the museum’s collection are on display. The exhibition is supplemented by material from Radax’s archive, texts by Bayer, and publications on the Wiener Gruppe from the inventory of the Generali Foundation Study Center.