Oscar Enberg

Egg and Bone discussing the Fall of Man
300 x 340 x 70 mm
oil on ceramic with wooden frame
Courtesy of the artist and Robert Heald,
Te Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington

Estimate: NZD 6,000 — 8,000

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Berlin based Oscar Enberg’s practice sits within a matrix of conceptual inputs which frequently oscillate between contemporary philosophies and ‘old knowledge’ - a type of meta-space within which myth and data collide with handmade artefacts combining found objects and highly crafted interventions.

His 2015 solo exhibition at Artspace Aotearoa the prophet, the wise, the technician and the Pharisee is a telling case in point. Enberg’s installation presented with a ‘Heath-Robinson affair’ logic, or perhaps a paucity of logic but a fulcrum of logic’ness’ - was described at the time by Mousse magazine as “embracing intertextuality, instability and seriality, Oscar Enberg’s sculptural installations demonstrate a baroque sensibility. In this new exhibition, the artist’s ongoing interests in the domestic or familial, commercial display and narrative texts (from literature to television sitcoms) converge in a season-appropriate, locally-infused tableau vivant; a site specific, fable-cum nativity scene.”

Enberg’s work asks the viewer to embrace the theatricality of conceit. In the case of the wall mounted scene presented in When the Dust Settles, which arrived in the nick of time from Berlin, we are quite literally teleported diorama style into a wee corner of (perhaps) a Bavarian inn to witness a doggerel ‘sacre conversazione’. Egg and Bone discussing the fall of man is both a ‘momento mori’ for these times and a restaging of a fireside chat between two elemental characters, one ripe with promise for the future, the other a relic of the past.

Artist Biography & History
with Artspace Aotearoa:


the prophet, the wise, the technician, and the Pharisee (solo), ​​11 December 2015 — 12 February 2016

the prophet, the wise, the technician, and the Pharisee was programmed as part of the season NEW HORIZONS November / December / January 2015 — 2016 at Artspace. The season presented this solo exhibition by Enberg and the exhibition BODY LANGUAGE by Imogen Taylor. Both exhibitions focussed on artistic research and studio process. Concurrently, a video installation lab presented works from Will Benedict & David Leonard, Hito Steyerl, and selected material from the public domain.

Oscar Enberg


Oscar Enberg (b. 1988, Christchurch, New Zealand) is an artist living in Berlin. He studied at Ilam School of Fine Arts, University of Canterbury and between 2016-17 was the recipient of the Creative New Zealand Artist Residency co-commissioned by the Kunstlerhaus Bethanien in Berlin. In 2017 he was awarded the prestigious Ars Viva Prize by the Kulturkreis der deutschen Wirtschaft. The prize is awarded annually to three German-based artists under the age of 35. His work is in private collections throughout Aotearoa New Zealand, Australia and Europe and is held in The Chartwell Trust, Sir James Wallace Art Trust and Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki. Upcoming exhibitions include Domestic Drama at Halle für Kunst Steiermark in Graz and solo exhibitions at Robert Heald Gallery, Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington and Mackintosh Lane, London.