Alfred Hrdlicka

Alfred Hrdlicka was an Austrian artist, sculptor, draughtsman and painter. After learning to be a dental technician from 1943 to 1945, Hrdlicka studied painting until 1952 at the Akademie der bildenden Künste under Albert Paris Gütersloh and Josef Dobrowsky. Afterwards he studied sculpture until 1957 under Fritz Wotruba. In 1960 he had his first exhibition in Vienna; in 1964 he attained international attention as a representative of Austria in the architecture Biennale in Venice, Italy.His controversial works in metal, paint, and pencil alienated as much as attracted the public. For Hrdlicka, art was Communist political propaganda, and his purpose as an artist was to educate the public to oppose war and violence. An atheist, he combined religious themes with topics considered taboo among believers