Wolfgang Laib
Passageway – Overgoing
Wolfgang Laib: Milkstone, 1987/1988, White marble and milk, Installation in the studio; Photo: Wolfgang Laib
Milkstone, 1987/1988


The work of Wolfgang Laib begins with these stones, at least its public sector: flat white stones of marble, hollowed out only to a depth of a millimeter, which he then fills up with milk to their horizontal level – sculptures of overwhelming simplicity.

ifa exhibition: milkstone, 1977, 3 x 92 x 98 cm


Wolfgang Laib collects mainly the pollen of dandelion, pine, moss and hazelnut, always in accordance with the rhythm of the seasons. The weeks spent in fields and forests accord him sufficient time for a still communication with nature. The viewer of his art is riveted not only by the intensity of the color of these pollens, but also by their own respective and individual auras.

ifa exhibition: 4 jars of pollen from pine blossoms (1992–93), 3 jars are to spread out, one in reserve, surface area 140 x 160 cm to 300 x 320 cm

Wolfgang Laib: Sifting of pollen from pine blossoms, 1999; Photo: Wolfgang Laib
Sifting of pollen from pine blossoms, 1999
Wolfgang Laib: Rice house, 1988/89, rice, marble, pollen, Photo: Wolfgang Laib
Rice house, 1988/89


The works with rice show a dimension more greatly influenced by the sculptural as compared to his earlier works. They reflect the strong influence upon Wolfgang Laib stemming from the philosophy and way of life of India.

ifa exhibition: Meals of rice, 1993, installation, 15 brass bowls at a diameter of 25 cm, total length at least 600 cm
Rice house, 1988/89. 20.5 x 21 x 76 cm
Rice house, 1990, 20 x 20 x 110 cm


The objects with beeswax represent a new step in Wolfgang Laibs' development and are counted among the most unusual creations of the art of the twentieth century. Before the visitor discovers the unusual beauty of the architecture, his or her nose has already taken note of the intense, infatuating scent of the wax. Notwithstanding the variations in these wax spaces – places of meditation – they are always an invitation to a metamorphosis of body, an incitement to passage from one condition to another.

ifa exhibition: House of beeswax, 1999, 134 x 23 x 54 cm
Transit – Transition, 2001, installation, 7 ships of beeswax, total surface area 350 x 70 x 1033 cm

Wolfgang Laib: Ziggurat, 1999, construction of wax and wood, Photo: Wolfgang Laib
Ziggurat, 1999
Photos: Wolfgang Laib