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Three Trashstones for the Munich Re office building on Mandlstrasse in Munich

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    November 2012: Three Trashstones by the artist Wilhelm Mundt lie in an inner courtyard of Munich Re’s office building on Mandlstrasse. The abstract, amorphous sculptures in various colours are reminiscent of oversized pebbles, and seem like glacial erratics from another world. Mysterious, magical, enigmatic.

    Wilhelm Mundt during the installation of his Trashstones talks to Susanne Ehrenfried-Bergmann.

    © Wilhelm Mundt / Munich Re, Video: Bodo Kessler

    On closer inspection it is apparent that their shiny coloured surfaces are composed of multiple layers, wrapped lithely around an inner core, following its shape. Wilhelm Mundt forms this core from objects left behind in the studio: pieces of wood, leftover adhesive tape, parts of old or discarded sculptures, but also broken everyday objects such as televisions, coffee machines, and personal items. In an intensive process, all these things are compacted, bound and glued according to a set concept. They are then coated with several layers of coloured, fibreglass-reinforced plastics or polyester resin, smoothed, polished and labelled with a production number. Only the artist can tell from the serial number what exactly is hidden under the plastic coating. Relics of artistic creativity and life are thus spun and conserved as in a cocoon. Nothing is thrown away. The Trashstones’ genesis is reminiscent of that of fossils, encased in layers of sand and mud millions of years ago. Wilhelm Mundt's Trashstones also preserve within them remnants of our time for a distant future.

    The series Trashstones began in 1989 with Trashstone 001. 

    Wilhelm Mundt, Trashstones, 2012
    © Wilhelm Mundt / Munich Re, Photo: Jens Bruchhaus